Welcome, Brother Matt

Oct 022005
Authors: Collegian Editorial Staff

The minutes or hours between classes are among the least valued.

In the limbo between classes, people often fill time with phone calls, idle meals or trips home to nap. Often this is when real education can take place.

Take "Brother Matt."

The rambling preacher has been screaming brimstone from atop a rock in the Plaza, informing students that the vast majority of them are damned. A sandwich board he dons before his unwanted sermons is a purported grocery list for Satan: "pot-smoking devils," "lewd women," "sports fans" and even "Mormons."

Most of the students, Christian or otherwise, who halt there between classes do not agree with him. Some actively mock him or argue with him. The commotion has on occasion drawn campus police to the amassed mob of 100 or more to ensure peace is kept. They can't stop him because the First Amendment protects him.

Some would like to see Brother Matt gone.

But we don't.

While the ranting preacher might not be pleasant to listen to, he is just as much a part of this world as any of us.

If students secure in their beliefs don't agree with what he's spouting, they should be pleased to share their own reasoned, supported arguments. The arguers should learn as much, if not more than the listening bystanders.

After Brother Matt moves on, others with radical ideas will come to campus to shout, rant and show disturbing photographs. They should be welcomed.

Education isn't about being comfortable. It's about figuring out what to do with discomfort. A canon of Socratic education is that a life unquestioned is not worth living.

Although we're confident Brother Matt isn't supplying us with the answers, we thank him for the questions.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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