With a proposed law, David Cameron would tear a hole into the fabric of academic free speech by demanding universities stop youth from being exposed to extremist ideas and speakers. The new law would also require universities to report students who could become “extremists.”
The universities would in essence become government agents spying on their students and monitoring what they can hear.
We’ve seen the authoritarians in universities in the United States attempt the same thing with the establishment of free speech zones, the banning of conservative speakers, and the elimination of conservative thought.
The law Cameron wants is part of his counter-terrorism effort. It would force universities, prisons, schools and health officials to perform risk assessments on speakers. To make matters worse, the authorities would have to check their speeches and debates beforehand.
They would be required to report students who are “at risk” of being drawn into radicalization.
Can you say thought police?
This would strike a death blow to academic freedom.
Instead of encouraging the free flow of ideas, universities would become government censors.
It is far better to let all voices be heard so they can be challenged. Driving them undercover is a formula for failure.
The terms of the law are vague and ambiguous and therein lies the biggest problem.
Let’s hope this gets struck down.
This would do absolutely nothing to solve the problem of radicalization.