2021

Democracy in Times of Crisis: When Freedom and Security Collide

The 2021 W&J Symposium on Democracy focused on “Democracy in Times of Crisis: When Freedom and Security Collide.” The tension that often exists between freedom and security has been heightened by recent events in our nation and around the world. In January 2021, the violent storming of the U.S. Capitol threatened the security of elected leaders and the democratic process itself. In the wake of this insurrection, federal troops limited access to Washington, D.C., and corporations banned users from posting on social media, arguing that security concerns sometimes outweigh freedom of expression. Meanwhile, as the global health pandemic raged on, debates continued about the extent to which government should mandate health protocols such as masking and social distancing.

Some public officials responded to protests against racial injustice with curfews, tear gas and other forceful methods, insisting it was necessary to limit freedom of assembly in the interest of maintaining security. Internationally, 2020 saw a continuing decline in democracy as many governments imposed new limits on individual freedoms and political dissent. For example, China instituted a “national security law” to suppress democratic rule in Hong Kong and arrested elected leaders and pro-democracy activists.

The 2021 W&J Symposium on Democracy explored these and other issues with sessions led by noteworthy leaders, academic experts, and our own students.

Schedule

Opening Remarks from W&J President
John C. Knapp and Gov. Tom Wolf

Tom Wolf

February 17, 2021 @ 8:45 am - 9:00 am

Freedom on the Net – A Global Overview of Human Rights in the Digital Age

Adrian Shahbaz

February 17, 2021 @ 10:00 am - 10:45 am

Conflict and Resolution Studies Student Panel: Heightening Racial Discrimination Awareness in the Struggle to Achieve Equality

February 17, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 11:45 am

Conflict and Resolution Studies Student Panel: America’s Promise Unfulfilled: Why Racial Hatred Can No Longer Be Ignored

February 17, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 11:45 am

I Didn’t Mean MY Rights: Why We Restrict Rights When We’re Scared

February 17, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 11:45 am

Forgetting Democracy? The Role of Remembrance and Sousveillance in Modern U.S. Politics

February 17, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 11:45 am

The Democracy Crisis in Hong Kong:
Special Report from Nathan Law

Nathan Law

February 17, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Lunch Break

February 17, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Leadership in Unprecedented Times

Jocelyn Benson

February 17, 2021 @ 1:00 pm - 1:45 pm

Virtually No Child Left Behind: The Dismantling of Public Education

February 17, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

Conflict and Resolution Studies Student Panel: How to Make the U.S. Tolerant: End Muslim Hate Speech

February 17, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

Conflict and Resolution Studies Student Panel: Steps to Resolve U.S. Repression and Divisiveness

February 17, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

The Freedom and Security of Refugees During the COVID-19 Pandemic

February 17, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

Eyewitness Reflections on the Capitol Insurrection, Biden Inauguration and Other Historic Events

Pat Benic

February 17, 2021 @ 3:00 pm - 3:45 pm

Understanding White Supremacy | Decoding the Actions of the White Power Movement

Kathleen Belew

February 17, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 4:45 pm

Closing Remarks from W&J President John C. Knapp

Dr. John C. Knapp

February 17, 2021 @ 4:45 pm - 5:00 pm

Symposium on Democracy Book Discussion

February 17, 2021 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Speakers

Kathleen Belew-Photo

Kathleen Belew

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Pat Benic

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Jocelyn Benson

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Nathan Law

AS Headshot

Adrian Shahbaz

Video Playlist

Photo Gallery