Colleges around the country have been making their own “free speech” rules which clearly violate the first amendment.
Indiana University Southeast is one such school. Students may only “express opinions” within a free speech zone. This is antithetical to what a college should stand for, according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), an advocacy organization which defends the free speech and due process rights of college students.
“It’s the price you pay for living in a free society,” Robert Shibley, Senior Vice President of FIRE, told FoxNews.com.”The entire enterprise of a university is to express scholarly thoughts and opinions…restraints on that are impossible.” [FoxNews]
IUS’s code requires university approval for acts of ‘expressed opinions’ by submitting an application at least five days in advance. The code is so broad, it’s hard to know what they are even referring to – they could mean anything and everything.
The school’s excuse is to prevent the disruption of education. They said they are concerned about endangering people and property.
They might be concerned about out-of-control protests, but they don’t say that in their code.
This isn’t just PC gone wild, it’s our own little version of Shariah Law.
It’s not just Indiana University Southeast. Colorado College, in Colorado Springs, prohibits “any act of ridicule…or embarrassment,” and Northeastern University, in Boston, prohibits the use of university computer resources to “transmit or make accessible material, which in the sole judgment of the University is offensive.”
“This gives the university carte blanche to censor any electronic communication of which it disapproves,” Shibley noted. “You’re teaching [college students] that they’re not equipped to live in a free society.”
This is also going on in the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, West Virginia University, the University of Nevada at Reno, Citrus College in California, Valdosta State University in Georgia, Texas Tech University and The University of Cincinnati .
We should be grateful to FIRE. The first amendment must never be infringed upon and they are out there protecting that right.
Thanks to FIRE, a federal judge has just ruled the University of Cincinnati’s “free speech zone” unconstitutional. U of C only allows .1% of the 137-acre campus for free speech including demonstrations, pickets, and rallies. They require a ten-day advance request to use the zone and threaten students with criminal prosecution for violations.
U of C is facing a federal civil rights lawsuit. A political student group seeking to collect signatures last month were told they could not even “walk around.” They were threatened with university cops hauling them in for prosecution on a trespassing charge.
This will have far-flung repercussions – hopefully.
What are the universities teaching these students? Certainly not civic responsibility. They are teaching that PC reigns supreme and the first amendment does not exist for them.