Free speech on college campuses. Why we need to protect free speech on campuses (essay) 2019-02-07

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Will Free Speech Survive on College Campuses?

free speech on college campuses

Debate, Discussion and Disruption Universities are by their very nature places for discussion and debate of controversial issues. New technology, for example, has created novel issues for campuses, with students and faculty using the World Wide Web to communicate disputed ideas, such as that the Holocaust did not occur, that either are offensive to many and arguably wrong, or to provide access to materials such as pornography that some find repulsive. If it is a public university, the answer starts with the First Amendment and subsequent laws and court rulings. In developing these codes, university administrators relied on a well-known Supreme Court doctrine — i. The second reason for protecting students from thoughts and ideas they find upsetting is to spare their tender feelings.

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Speech on Campus

free speech on college campuses

Cathy Young is a columnist at Newsday and RealClearPolitics. Speech that deeply offends our morality or is hostile to our way of life warrants the same constitutional protection as other speech because the right of free speech is indivisible: When we grant the government the power to suppress controversial ideas, we are all subject to censorship by the state. Other schools have allowed Spencer to speak. You have as much right to debate a topic as to ignore an invited speaker. Choper d istinguished professor of law at the University of California Berkeley School of Law. Without question, individual safety should be a primary concern. His careful analysis of codes enacted between 1992 and 1997 demonstrates that hate-speech policies not only persist, but have also actually increased in number despite court decisions striking them down.

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A chilling study shows how hostile college students are toward free speech

free speech on college campuses

Zelizer: This is a place where faculty and administrators have a big role to play—even if they are the focus of protest. That set off a firestorm when it was published in 1994 … a firestorm reignited at Middlebury. The matter of the legal standing of such codes, however, can obscure the larger issue of whether they should exist at all. Students drove out a progressive professor who objected to a proposal that white students and professors stay off campus for a day. I'd be freakin beat up and lynched by all the people who claim to love and care about everyone! Also from this poll, the college students who identified as Democrats were more open to free speech than their Republican peers. For almost thirty years I was active in Republican politics. While the Supreme Court has moved away from the somewhat stark formation given the fighting-words doctrine by Justice Murphy, lower courts have continued to invoke it.

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NPR Choice page

free speech on college campuses

Then campus officials have no choice but to prevent the speech, given that they must provide for the safety of students, staff, and faculty. His click-bait results landed in the Washington Post, while being simultaneously spewed across the conservative media landscape. Unfortunately none of us has a crystal ball. Although the First Amendment applies only to the government, including public universities, private universities should follow these same principles. We had a variety of people put out some pretty edgy stuff. The codes inevitably were far too vague in terms of what speech was permitted and what was prohibited.

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Debating Free Speech on Campus

free speech on college campuses

Young Americans, exposed to some of the most intellectually open environments that have ever existed in a human society, are rejecting the values of to an almost unanimous extent. Giving professors the option of giving trigger warnings seems much more reasonable. When professor Stanger was escorting Murray out, they were attacked by a mob that included outside activists, and she was left with a concussion and whiplash. Here is whose tenure was threatened over a blog post. As students, you are surrounded by bright, accomplished scholars and have access to a wealth of knowledge.

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Free speech on college campuses

free speech on college campuses

Sure, students would be encouraged to do or not do something. Yik Yak is therefore controversial, and some schools have tried to ban it. Shit, a sack of taters contains more intellect, and more resilience to boot. Although the Court has not directly limited academic freedom through the public-employee doctrine, it has constricted the rights of faculty at public institutions. Yeah, I sometimes heard shit that I didn't agree with.

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When Free Speech on Campus Crosses a Line

free speech on college campuses

The Wall Street Journal a survey of 800 college students that found 51 percent favored speech codes. Critical analysis and the ability to think for oneself are and should be hallmarks of a college education. They would be portrayed as victims. It is threatened by activists agitating for speech codes and sanctions for professors or classmates who disagree with them. Dartmouth University students the expulsion of fraternities that throw parties deemed racist and the forced a student newspaper to change its name. The opinions expressed are those of the writer.

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The Death of Free Speech on College Campuses

free speech on college campuses

And when an individual or group repeatedly blocks others from expressing themselves, as with a shout-down, the school should reserve the right to remove them, even if it means suspension or expulsion. Or they don't want to read a book if it has language that is offensive to African Americans. Keller: Of course most students, now as always, are more caught up with their lives present and future than with the state of discussion and the flow of ideas on campus. A 2015 survey by the Pew Research Institute said that four in 10 college students believe the government should be able to prevent people from publicly making statements that are offensive to minority groups. I can certainly sympathize with people who have experienced some past trauma and want to know that say X movie contains graphic rape images, so they can prepare themselves mentally. But the war of words is continuing on college campuses across the country, including Middlebury, where students like Liz Dunn and Rae Aaron say the impact of the Charles Murray incident is still being felt.

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Debating Free Speech on Campus

free speech on college campuses

Officials at Evergreen State College in Washington State closed school and moved the 2017 graduation ceremonies after the avowedly progressive school splintered into factions. We want to hear what you think about this article. They routinely navigate a world of differences that was uncommon, if not unheard-of, for college students of yore. The survey suggests that this might not be due to hypocrisy so much as a misunderstanding of what the First Amendment actually entails. Younger Americans are better informed, more tolerant of dissent, and less bigoted than older generations. For example, public colleges and universities have no obligation to fund student publications; however, the Supreme Court has that if a public university voluntarily provides these funds, it cannot selectively withhold them from particular student publications simply because they advocate a controversial point of view. But, in our system, undifferentiated fear or apprehension of disturbance is not enough to overcome the right to freedom of expression.

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NPR Choice page

free speech on college campuses

It covers all aspects of campus safety, including access control, video surveillance, mass notification and security staff practices. But disinvitation is just one kind of illiberal reaction; the aggressive disruption experienced by Sommers is another. They are using colleges as their stages and setting us up as their foils. The rapper Big Sean a student effort to get him disinvited from Princeton. Those who want trigger warnings, so they'll know in advance what ideas to block out. Perhaps the most alarming aspect of these results is that over 60 percent of students who identify as Democrats find this behavior acceptable, and nearly the same percentage of males 57 percent find it acceptable. Follow her on Twitter: CathyYoung63.

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