- John McWhorter: Richard Spencer's speech is an opportunity for effective protest
- Left's embrace of safe spaces hinders counterarguments against hate, he says
John McWhorter teaches linguistics, American studies, philosophy and music history at Columbia University and is the author of "The Language Hoax: Why the World Looks the Same in Any Language." The opinions expressed in this commentary are his.
(CNN)When I was in college in the early 1980s, one of the more peculiar events in the fall was a visit from "Brother Jed Smock." Smock, a self-styled "confrontational evangelist," would plant himself at some central outdoor location and confidently preach against, well, you name it.