It's telling that we teach our children "no biting", "no stealing", and "no lying" before we teach them critical thought. There's an element of selfish paternalism there; it's easier for teachers to preside over well-behaved children than it is to wrangle smart alecks. (The biological factor - humans grow sharp teeth well before their brain can handle serious thinking - is also present, but is insufficient to explain everything.) As a society, we value critical thinking in detectives, doctors, researchers, and literary critics, but for the important stuff - how we interact with each other, what resources are fair game, where you may place your penis / what may be placed in your vagina - we fall back on social pressure, institutional indoctrination, and propaganda. Most human decision making happens at the emotional or instinctive levels; we make sure that our neighbors have the Right Values because it's just too risky to let them decide for themselves - however critically - if there is a moral imperative to protect (your) socially-constructed property rights. Even the most liberal campuses have variations on "No Means No" campaigns. They don't have seminars where they invite students to dissect all sides of the issue with a critical eye, they bring in the big guns of Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt, Shame, and Authority because rape is too fucking important to screw around with. Any dean who decided to hold "Rape: Teach the Controversy" sessions instead would be pressured out of office, and rightly so, even if his justification was that the truth has nothing to fear from analysis and that anything less was condescending to his students. That's extremely optimistic, and either puts a lot of confidence in the ability of critically-thinking students to come to his own conclusions at the end (the "when I say think for yourself I mean think like me" approach) or is dangerously cavalier about his charges ending up with the Wrong Values on their own (implying that the dean is willing to be wrong on this issue).
This is the value of taboo: it gives you a firm grounding from which you can explore without messing up something important. My (Catholic) high-school teachers used to use the euphemism "life-giving" to describe religions and cultures that, while not necessarily Christian, fulfilled the basic criteria and were therefore tolerable. You could critically examine any faith you liked, provided that it respected and encouraged growth into your fullness as a rational, emotional, social, and spiritual being. On the other hand, any religion that tries to isolate you from your family or encourages mutilation and suicide is a dangerous cult and can be dismissed out of hand, without bothering to examine the specifics of its doctrine. With those boundaries in place, you can explore as much as you want without having to worry about doing something irreversible. Freedom within strict boundaries, which TGRR is going to argue eloquently is not freedom at all, but if those boundaries weren't there the options would have been Catholicism or ostracization.
Here's a more concrete example: anybody remember the then-Harvard President saying stuff about innate gender differences explaining gender ratios in high academia back in 2005? The full transcript, in which he says a number of very ignorant things, was released eventually, but the immediate media coverage and fallout was mostly based on rememberings of his argument that boys have a higher variance in intelligence than girls. This does not mean that boys are smarter than girls, but it would imply that the top .1% (and the bottom .1%) is disproportionately male. It's well documented that boys have substantially higher rates of autism and other kinds of retardation; it's not completely insane to suggest a similar gender bias at the opposite end of the spectrum. There were some who wanted to have a serious public discussion about his theory, and those who argued that academic freedom includes the freedom to be wrong on emotional issues, but the majority came down on the side that so public of a figure at such a respected institution could not be allowed to be critical of a central tenet of equality. An honest public discussion about the neurological and statistical basis for the Aptitude Variance Hypothesis (or lack thereof) detracts from the important issue of gender equality in academia. I'm arguing that the mainstream feminist response - which mostly attempted to stifle that discourse with blanket accusations of sexism, calls for his resignation, and more SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP than you can fit in a letter to the editor - was not entirely wrong, even if it was a little intellectually dishonest and paternalistic. The importance of everybody understanding that they are not allowed to think that men are smarter than women outweighs the risk of potentially undermining that message with the uncertain investigation into the goopy mess that is developmental neurobiology.