Last Saturday, President Trump announced that he intends to sign an executive order to cut federal research money to universities that fail to protect free speech (article here). This presents an opportunity to reflect on freedom of speech at Chico State with a few questions for you to consider and post a response to on the FDEV Blog…
- Does Chico State do enough to protect freedom of speech?
- Does Chico State do enough to protect vulnerable groups from speech that is offensive but not illegal?
- Do campaigns promoted by Chico State such as “I don’t say” or “Cultures are not Costumes” infringe on freedom of speech or expression?
- Are these campaigns effective in helping marginalized groups?
- In your classroom, how do you empower students to exercise freedom of speech, particularly when they have a dissenting opinion?
Speech that is not protected by the first amendment includes defamation, harassment, true threats, and inciting imminent violence. In his book “Free Speech on Campus”, Erwin Chemerinsky argues that campuses should not treat the expression of ides as a threat to the learning environment. He acknowledges the tension between “the desire to protect the learning experience of all students and the desire to safeguard freedom of expression.” How do you balance these two aspects in your classroom?