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The 10 Worst Colleges For Free Speech: 2017

ZinheadZinhead 2473 replies137 postsRegistered User Senior Member
edited February 2017 in Parents Forum
From Huffpost:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/58ac64bfe4b0417c4066c2f1
There isn’t a week that goes by without a campus free speech controversy reaching the headlines. That’s why it’s as important as ever that we at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) review the record each year and shine a spotlight on the 10 worst schools for free speech.

Since FIRE’s first “worst of the worst” list was released in 2011, the number of colleges and universities with the most restrictive speech codes has declined. However, 92 percent of American colleges still maintain speech codes that either clearly restrict—or could too easily be used to restrict—free speech. Students still find themselves corralled into absurdly-named “free speech zones,” taxed when they invite speakers deemed “controversial” by administrators, or even anonymously reported on by their fellow students when their speech is subjectively perceived to be “biased."

edited February 2017
124 replies
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Replies to: The 10 Worst Colleges For Free Speech: 2017

  • CorinthianCorinthian 1783 replies61 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited February 2017
    Note that FIRE includes Fordham on the Top Ten list for restricting the Students for Justice in Palestine and Georgetown for restricting Bernie Sanders supporters from speaking.
    edited February 2017
    Post edited by skieurope on
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  • ZekesimaZekesima 352 replies8 postsRegistered User Member
    edited February 2017
    Nobody knew about that at UCB a month ago. I heard a lot of people in the crowd calling him a homophobe. ETA: Please don't start arguing with me about Milo--I am in no way a supporter or defender of his. Just pointing out how ridiculous it is to call him anti-gay.
    edited February 2017
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  • CorinthianCorinthian 1783 replies61 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited February 2017
    I hope this isn't going to turn into a thread about Milo.

    MODERATOR'S NOTE; Balance of post deleted.
    edited February 2017
    Post edited by skieurope on
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  • colfac92colfac92 374 replies6 postsRegistered User Member
    Regardless of the top 10, or controversies around current provocateurs, I found it interesting to go to the FIRE site and search their database for colleges I am associated with one way or another to see what sorts of "free speech" issues they might have identified on those campuses. FWIW.
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  • perspectivestudeperspectivestude 150 replies44 postsRegistered User Junior Member
  • skieuropeskieurope 38437 replies6716 postsSuper Moderator Super Moderator
    edited February 2017
    MODERATOR'S NOTE
    I hope this isn't going to turn into a thread about Milo.
    Nope. Going too far off topic. Plus there is an entire thread devoted to that topic already. 5 posts deleted.
    edited February 2017
    Post edited by skieurope on
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  • droppeditdroppedit 1030 replies18 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    sourcewatch.org - LOL
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  • marvin100marvin100 8558 replies1246 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    That's a compelling counterargument, @droppedit . Care to do better?
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  • droppeditdroppedit 1030 replies18 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    Nope. You can read all about CMD yourself. I especially like how one CMD front quotes another CMD front as a reference in defending itself (sourcewatch.org defends prwatch.org and vice-versa).
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  • TooOld4SchoolTooOld4School 3326 replies12 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    I found it interesting that Northern Michigan University had a speech code prohibiting talk of suicide. NMU gets around 150 inches of snow per year and it gets really, really cold (-20 to -30 deg) on occasion. Mix in the hard drinking culture of the UP+ short winter days and it does not seem like a coincidence.
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  • HuntHunt 26787 replies131 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    FIRE sometimes makes decent points, but they always stack the deck by leaving out restrictive religious colleges. For example, it's a laugh to include Harvard for restricting students rights of free association, while leaving out many other colleges that restrict student organizations much more tightly.
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  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 12610 replies231 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    I've read that their point there is that some colleges SAY they restrict speech so it's OK. But i agree, @Hunt .
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  • CorinthianCorinthian 1783 replies61 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    @hunt, as you presumably know, unlike public universities, which are of course government actors, private universities are not legally obligated to uphold the First Amendment rights of students on campus. Among private universities FIRE considers whether the private university holds itself out as a bastion of freedom of speech and academic freedom. Many religious colleges are very clear that they do NOT promise free speech rights.
    For example, Brigham Young University (BYU) is quite forthright in its stated policies that students entering BYU are not guaranteed robust free speech rights. One BYU policy says the following about free expression: “[T]he exercise of individual and institutional academic freedom must be a matter of reasonable limitations. In general, at BYU a limitation is reasonable when the faculty behavior or expression seriously and adversely affects the university mission or the Church.” It would be clear to anyone attending BYU that they are not entitled to unfettered free speech on campus. If a private college clearly does not promise free speech, and the college makes this known publicly and consistently, entering students have given informed consent and have voluntarily chosen to limit their own rights-in much the same way students entering military academies or theological seminaries understand that they are relinquishing many rights they would enjoy at a state college.
    https://www.thefire.org/in-court/state-of-the-law-speech-codes/. Harvard by contrast claims that "The principles of free speech and the free interchange of ideas are fundamental to the Harvard community." http://osl.fas.harvard.edu/events-policies-and-resources#freespeech. So Harvard opens itself up to criticism about whether it is delivering on its promise. You can argue about the validity of that criticism, but my point is that FIRE has a clear reason for leaving out many restrictive religious colleges from its criticisms.
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  • MassDaD68MassDaD68 1524 replies24 postsRegistered User Senior Member
    Most schools require you to check your rights at the door as a stipulation for entry. Don't agree, then don't come.

    My 18+ year old son asked be the other day if he could carry some Advil in his backpack in case he needed it. I informed him that the school has a zero tolerance policy on drugs and although he was a legal adult in every way like the teachers, he was unable to because he was a "student". They set up these rules with good intentions but sometimes it does lose it in translation.
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