Politically Savvy: NY Times Columnist Pied in the Face

Being a political columnist may not be the best job in the world for everyone, but I would say it’s treated Thomas L. Friedman fairly well. Friedman writes a widely read opinion column for the New York Times, and is widely known for being one of the most prominent economics and foreign policy thinkers in the US today.

Some of the ideas he writes about are highly controversial, and he is often criticized for being a neoliberal, but criticism comes with the the territory, and most of those who choose to write about their opinions for a living are used to that and consider it a fact of life.

So imagine Friedman’s surprise when he went to speak at Brown University in late April, and two laughing Brown students threw two green cream-filled pies at him during his speech!

I understand that Friedman’s ideas are not universally popular and expressing your dissent is great. However, a thoughtful dialogue could have been infinitely more effective than a prank. Instead of making themselves look like intelligent college students, they came off as immature kids.

Self-expression is great, but if you want to make a point and have people take your argument seriously, try actually engaging the person in discussion, not throw pies at a semi-famous journalist!

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