Author Topic: Mob Censorship On Campus  (Read 87 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online rangerrebew

  • America defending Veteran
  • TBR Contributor
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 70,793
  • “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them
Mob Censorship On Campus
« on: March 20, 2017, 05:55:48 PM »
Mob Censorship On Campus
by Richard A. Epstein
via Defining Ideas (Hoover Institution)
Monday, March 13, 2017

In today’s political climate, there are sharp divisions of opinion over a range of issues, from health care and climate change to education and labor law. Ideally, a civil debate undertaken with mutual respect could ease tension and advance knowledge. Politics, however, often takes a very different turn.

One of the landmark decisions of the United States Supreme Court, New York Times v. Sullivan, was decided in 1964 at the height of civil rights movement. Writing for the majority, Justice William Brennan insisted that the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech rested on “a profound national commitment to the principle that debate on public issues should be uninhibited, robust, and wide-open, and that it may well include vehement, caustic, and sometimes unpleasantly sharp attacks on government and public officials.” He then concluded that the First Amendment offered extensive protection to the media from defamation suits brought by private individuals—a principle that was later extended to apply to public figures as well.  Defamation suits in his view could chill public debate.

There is an obvious tension between the efforts to secure deliberative democracy and those to provide extensive constitutional protection of caustic speech. That tension came to a head in two recent free speech incidents on university campuses. At Berkeley recently, an organized group of armed protesters overwhelmed local police officers and turned what was a peaceful protest by many Berkeley students against the provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos into a violent attack against persons and property. The protestors shut down Yiannopoulos’s lecture and have so far escaped any police or university punishment for their misdeeds. A similar incident happened just over a month later at Middlebury College, where student protestors violently silenced the thoughtful conservative social scientist Charles Murray, who had been invited to speak before a Republican student group.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2017, 05:56:32 PM by rangerrebew »
"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim tribute to patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness -- these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. . . . reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principles."
George Washington

"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters."
Benjamin Franklin

Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo