Across the nation, the First Amendment has been reprimanded, reduced, and repositioned on college campuses. From “Free Speech Zones” to “Speech Codes,” students are no longer allowed to say what they believe – or at least, without fear of punishment.
Grades have been lowered, friends have been lost, debates have never happened because of Free Speech rules and regulations on many college campuses.
Ziva Dahl, in an article for The Daily Wire, outlined just a few of the Free Speech battles happening on campus right now.
Faculty at DePaul recently passed a resolution reprimanding philosophy professor Jason Hill. The professor wrote an article that had strong support for Israel and its right to exist. He condemned terrorism and “the inveterate corruption of the Palestinian leadership.”
The faculty claimed that the ideas portrayed in Hill’s article were “insensitive” to members of the community and that they “ran counter to the popular opinions of peers.”
Although Professor Hill’s opinion is different, he has every right to express what he believes in. Sadly, Professor Hill is not the only instance of Anti-Israel backlash in academia.
The Code of Conduct currently in place at Williams College states that “students of all ages and beliefs” are supported at the institution. Despite this, the Williams’ Student Government Association refused to recognize the pro-Israel student club Williams Initiative for Israel (WIFI).
WIFI is the first club in over a decade at Williams College to be denied funding and other club privileges.
The SGA at Trinity College denied recognition to the Churchill Club, formed to support discussions on themes underpinning Western civilization. In essence, a place for students to debate ideas.
Students of color at Trinity claim that the club supports “white supremacy” and “ethnocentricity.” Joanne Berger-Sweeney, President of Trinity College, reversed the SGA’s ruling on procedural grounds, not on the grounds of Free Speech.
Hypocritically, Berger-Sweeney applied the Freedom of Speech to defend Trinity Professor Johnny Williams.
Williams tweeted that “whiteness is terrorism.” This tweet became infamous, receiving national notoriety.
The Student group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) posted eviction flyers on dorm rooms across campus, demonizing Israel and Jewish students. The administration at Emory justified this act, as it was “protected by free speech.”
The standard changes for groups with a mainstream stance, spreading left-wing views.
Martine Haas, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, conducted a study researching the link between exposure and knowledge. Haas concluded that exposure to new ideas and perspectives is the best method for a breakthrough in knowledge.
College campuses are supposed to aid in this discovery: a marketplace of ideas. While leftist student groups are free to wonder campus, many right-of-center groups are marginalized, limited in how they get exposure.
The question is not why are conservative groups being constricted; rather, why is the First Amendment being constricted.
SUGGESTED: President Trump’s Newest Executive Order Mandates Free Speech On Campus — A Win for TPUSA
According to a recent survey, students, faculty and administrators have been shown to demand the censorship of or punishment for ideas they see as “controversial” or “offensive.”
Roughly 53% of college students surveyed believe “diversity” and “inclusion” to be more important than the Freedom of Speech and the First Amendment.
Similarly, 64% felt the U.S. Constitution should not protect “hate speech,” and 73% supported policies that legally restrict offensive slurs.
Conservative student groups, such as Turning Point USA, are being rejected, mistreated and ignored for having a different opinion. This treatment does not appear mutual for left-leaning student groups on campus.
Professors are faced with de-characterization for their opinions. The freedom of speech is selectively upheld for particular students. This is the ultimate threat to American values.