Take Your Rights Somewhere Else

Oh, lovely academia and its commitment to free expression:

In a stunning illustration of the attitude taken towards free speech by too many colleges across the United States, Modesto Junior College in California told a student that he could not pass out copies of the United States Constitution outside the student center on September 17, 2013—Constitution Day. Captured on video, college police and administrators demanded that Robert Van Tuinen stop passing out Constitution pamphlets and told him that he would only be allowed to pass them out in the college’s tiny free speech zone, and only after scheduling it several days or weeks ahead of time. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has written to Modesto, demanding that the college rescind this policy immediately.

The FIRE, in case you don’t know, are a completely awesome organization devoted to fighting for academic and personal freedom for everyone. Every year, some idiot liberal expresses shock when FIRE fights for the rights of a liberal organization. I am not shocked: this is what FIRE does. They don’t care what your political views are; they care about freedom.

The free speech zones that decorate about 15% of our college campuses are a disgrace. Colleges should be giving their students more freedom of expression than the government minimum, not less. And it should apply to everyone: from Occupy Idiots to Tea Partiers (yes, there are some on campuses) to gay rights activists to abortion activists. Colleges and universities like to claim that they aren’t exercising prior restraint; they’re acting like an employer who won’t let you engage in political activity at work. But most of them are, in fact, state institutions and almost all of them get massive portions of their budgets from state and federal agencies. When they are completely privately funded, then they can act like private agencies.

I’ve talked about all this before but I had to post this because … this really takes the cake. Telling a kid handing out Constitution pamphlets to get lost on Constitution Day? Holy crap, that’s bad.

Comments are closed.

  1. InsipiD

    Freedom of speech seems to have turned away from the freedom to criticize the government or political opponents to the freedom to parade with your wiener out or cuss in front of children. This isn’t in addition to, it’s instead, and its an active redefinition. As soon as the constitution can be redefined into meaninglessness, they can take it away completely.

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  2. Hal_10000 *

    I think PJ O’Rourke put it best when he said the only freedom a lot of liberals believe in is the freedom to put what they want in their mouths, to say bad words and to expose their private parts in art museums. Actually, to judge my Bloomberg, I don’t think they believe in the first anymore.

    When I went to college in the early 90’s, I was honestly shocked by how often so-called liberals supported restrictions on freedom, especially free speech (political correctness). And my college was actually one of the better ones. Many were (and are) far far worse. A couple of years ago, a college threatened criminal charges against a prof over a Firefly poster.

    Lee, as usual, put it best. Once the Left got into academia, they closed the door behind them.

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  3. Poosh

    The university (or “college”) is where the elites are bred. It makes sense for liberals to censor what they can and cannot do and think, and minimise contact with different ideas and view points (which are not being treated negatively).

    There’s some scumbag author who wrote some propagandist novel attacking Palin and the Christian “right”, and there’s a line that goes “they told us what they would do, and we didn’t listen, so they did it” or something to that effect. Wrong of course, but the opposite was actually true (perhaps they were projecting) – post-marxism is THE ideology dispersed in education, and they TOLD you they would do it, see the Frankfurt school of philosophy.

    This stuff really shouldn’t surprise you :(

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