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The 10 Worst Colleges For Free Speech: 2017


Replies to: The 10 Worst Colleges For Free Speech: 2017

  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    Zinhead wrote:
    Here is a recent article from St. Olaf's which describes conservative students transferring because they have been harassed due to political beliefs.

    So they want a safe space? Shouldn't they respond to speech with more speech? Snowflakes.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    vistajay wrote:
    Except that if less students apply and predominately SJW types, the school ranking will drop

    Has this ever happened? Literally every top school in the US has consistently become more and more tolerant over the last century, and yet the top schools remain more or less the same. Unless you can give some reason to believe this is true, it's hogwash.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    I can understand being wary of public polling and studies coming form FIRE

    These are two very different things. FIRE is an astroturfing right-wing activist organization, not really about free speech at all but about trying to create safe spaces for radical right-wing speech.
  • hebegebehebegebe Registered User Posts: 1,866 Senior Member
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    Yeah--and it was her ACLU that used its donation money to actively volunteer to defend the KKK. I'm not on her side at all.
  • CorinthianCorinthian Registered User Posts: 1,432 Senior Member
    It's not Nadine Stossen's "side" to stand for free speech for all, including the KKK. It's the ACLU's side, and it's principled, and why the ACLU and FIRE both find themselves defending speech they detest. https://www.aclu.org/other/hate-speech-campus.
    Q: I just can't understand why the ACLU defends free speech for racists, sexists, homophobes and other bigots. Why tolerate the promotion of intolerance?

    A: Free speech rights are indivisible. Restricting the speech of one group or individual jeopardizes everyone's rights because the same laws or regulations used to silence bigots can be used to silence you. Conversely, laws that defend free speech for bigots can be used to defend the rights of civil rights workers, anti-war protesters, lesbian and gay activists and others fighting for justice. For example, in the 1949 case of Terminiello v. Chicago, the ACLU successfully defended an ex-Catholic priest who had delivered a racist and anti-semitic speech. The precedent set in that case became the basis for the ACLU's successful defense of civil rights demonstrators in the 1960s and '70s.

    The indivisibility principle was also illustrated in the case of Neo-Nazis whose right to march in Skokie, Illinois in 1979 was successfully defended by the ACLU. At the time, then ACLU Executive Director Aryeh Neier, whose relatives died in Hitler's concentration camps during World War II, commented: "Keeping a few Nazis off the streets of Skokie will serve Jews poorly if it means that the freedoms to speak, publish or assemble any place in the United States are thereby weakened."

    Q: I have the impression that the ACLU spends more time and money defending the rights of bigots than supporting the victims of bigotry!!??

    A: Not so. Only a handful of the several thousand cases litigated by the national ACLU and its affiliates every year involves offensive speech. Most of the litigation, advocacy and public education work we do preserves or advances the constitutional rights of ordinary people. But it's important to understand that the fraction of our work that does involve people who've engaged in bigoted and hurtful speech is very important:

    Defending First Amendment rights for the enemies of civil liberties and civil rights means defending it for you and me.
  • fragbotfragbot Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    FIRE is an astroturfing right-wing activist organization, not really about free speech at all but about trying to create safe spaces for radical right-wing speech.

    While Alan Kors is conservative, FIRE's other co-founder Harvey Silverglate is most decidedly not. While I would agree with you that they often end up advocating for conservative professors/students, I'd argue that has more to do with the irrational ideologues on campus being more numerous on the left than they are the right. Correspondingly, the Steven Salaitas and Ward Churchills of the world (FIRE has commented on both of these men as well) are comparatively relatively rare.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    @fragbot - FIRE isn't driven by its founders but by its funders.

    As for the ACLU defending the KKK, well, of course the KKK has a right to free speech, but the ACLU makes the choice to use its donation money to defend the KKK, which it doesn't have to do. I think that choice sucks and I'd like the ACLU a lot more if it didn't waste its money actively choosing to defend racists, homophobes, and xenophobes.
  • Ohiodad51Ohiodad51 Registered User Posts: 2,245 Senior Member
    If the ACLU selectively defended the First Amendment based on the politics of the person speaking, then they would be ignored as being just another biased political operation, in much the way many of you try and denigrate FIRE. The difference is that there would be reason to believe that, rather than the wishful thinking that is evident here.
  • CorinthianCorinthian Registered User Posts: 1,432 Senior Member
    @marvin100 you always post about FIRE's funding sources and call them "astroturf" right wing activists. But do you have evidence to support your implied assertion that FIRE doesn't defend the rights of lefties? I'm going to repost what I posted back at #29:

    Regardless of where FIRE gets a lot of donations, its record shows that FIRE defends both liberals and conservatives.
    To be clear: FIRE defends student and faculty speech regardless of the viewpoint expressed or the speaker’s identity. If expression is protected by the First Amendment, FIRE defends it—period. That means we defend Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Democratic Socialists, and those affiliated with no party at all; Muslims, Jews, Christians, and atheists; environmental activists, animal rights activists, pro-choice activists, anti-rape activists, anti-war activists, and LGBT activists; free market advocates, pro-life activists, anti-immigration activists, and anti-affirmative action activists; student reporters, student government members, adjunct faculty, and tenured professors; and many, many more. FIRE even stands ready to protect the expressive rights of those who call for censorship, though we flatly disagree with those advocates’ goals.
    https://www.thefire.org/censored-on-campus-fire-will-defend-you/ (The FIRE site gives hyperlinks for each category that link to specific examples of cases they've handled).
  • CorinthianCorinthian Registered User Posts: 1,432 Senior Member
    edited March 16
    Some more:

    https://www.thefire.org/independent-newspapers-crucial-for-students-in-tense-times/ (from 12/22/16 praising the surge in publications run by black students in order to address racial issues and incidents on campuses nationwide)

    https://www.thefire.org/wisconsin-lawmakers-once-again-threaten-academic-freedom/ (from 12/21/16 regarding threat by lawmakers to withhold funding because of course on "The Problem of Whiteness")

    https://www.thefire.org/protect-the-flag-bill-undermines-core-principles-of-free-speech/ (12/9/16 conceming bill submitted in Congress to withhold federal funds from schools that permit students to take down or otherwise disrespect the flag)

    https://www.thefire.org/rutgers-professor-detained-and-suspended-following-post-election-tweets-and-comments/ (11/22/16 saying professor's anti-Trump tweets, while "hyperbolic" in threatening to run Trump supporters off the road and burn a flag inside his classroom, nonetheless protected speech)

    By the way, all I'm doing is scrolling through FIRE's monthly Newsdesk archives, and each month it's easy to find situations where FIRE is condemning those colleges and legislatures that attempt to censor speech by liberals/progressives.

    Also here is FIRE criticizing Jerry Falwell, Jr. for claiming that Liberty University "promotes the free expression of ideas unlike many major universities where political correctness prevents conservative students from speaking out." FIRE points out that Liberty blatantly and openly censors students, which as a private university it is free to do but cannot then claim to value freedom of expression. https://www.thefire.org/liberty-universitys-values-and-jerry-falwell-jr-s-pro-free-speech-statements-dont-add-up/
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,014 Senior Member
    edited March 16
    I'm not clicking all your links (thanks, though, for the capsule summaries in the second link-dump; they're helpful), but a quick looks reveals literally nothing that's actually leftist. Pot shirts? Burning flags? Those aren't politically leftist positions at all--they're literally nothing but free speech concerns with no real political content.
This discussion has been closed.