Friday, February 03, 2017
Model Legislation to Protect Free Speech on Campus
On many of our college and university campuses, speaking freely is an act of bravery — if you disagree with the prevailing leftist notions about the world. Speech codes, “bias incident” systems, the mania over “microaggressions,” speaker disinvitations, and other features of contemporary college life tell non-progressives that they should just keep silent, while telling progressives that they are doing the right thing in trying to shut down debate over competing beliefs.
This has gone on far too long. In today’s Martin Center article, Stanley Kurtz writes about model legislation he worked on with the Goldwater Institute that would finally make free speech central to all the state institutions of higher education in states that adopt it.
The Campus Free Speech Act would require the governing bodies of public colleges and universities to shore up the eroding foundations of free speech and report to the public on their results.
Kurtz explains why the restoration of free speech is so important, writing, “If true freedom of speech is ‘freedom for the thought that we hate,’ then freedom is actually a form of self-mastery. Far from being license, true freedom is an act of self-control, a refusal to physically extinguish even the speech we abhor.