The history of free speech in the United States is a complex and fascinating topic, deeply rooted in the nation’s founding principles. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1791, protects the right to free speech, along with freedom of religion, the press, assembly, and petition.
Do not let fear of being different or the assumption of ‘cancel culture’ define you or your college experience. You are entitled as much as anyone one else to express your view in a courteous and intelligent way; let the chips fall where they may.
The health effects of speech are inherently subjective. So who decides what speech is “harmful”?
Parallels between the world of Orwell’s 1984 and our own are obvious — and troubling.
I want to come out in favor of safe spaces. Not everywhere, or for all purposes, but in general I think there should be a strong presumption in favor of limited and exclusive safe spaces for any group that wants to establish one. Of course, the group would need to have the ability and legal […]
Is asking someone, “Where are you from?” an example of microaggression? These days, it’s unclear. In general, people generally apply the term microaggression to describe subtle or perceived insults on socially marginalized groups. It’s such a vague term, however, that is often used to label behavior that could mean anything—or nothing at all. Nevertheless, in […]
Limits on free speech are often justified to prevent people from offending others. But to paraphrase Nietzsche, if we can overcome what offends us, it makes us stronger. In the Learn Liberty video below, Northwestern University Professor Laura Kipnis explains how being offended can actually be an intellectual exercise which allows us to explore the […]
If you’ve been part of any conversation about American higher education recently, you might have heard someone complain that colleges and universities are morphing from educators to babysitters. Now, students at Dartmouth College are fighting back against the perceived shift. Leaders of the school’s student government delivered a scathing petition, signed by 1,200 students, demanding […]
In a recent commencement address at the University of Michigan, former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg was booed after criticizing campus safe spaces. As Yahoo News reported: The whole purpose of college is to learn how to deal with difficult situations — not run away from them,” Bloomberg told the school’s graduating class. “One […]
A recent incident at American University’s School of Law highlights just how divisive the issue of campus speech has become. As the Washington Post reported, it began with a note: Earlier this month, someone left a hand-written flier on the door of a faculty member’s office at American University’s Washington College of Law that read, […]
While students are enjoying their break from classes, New Hampshire legislators are standing up for their free speech rights on campus. A pair of state representatives recently introduced two bills to protect academic freedom at New Hampshire’s public colleges and universities. They’re not alone: Learn Liberty has launched a new website encouraging students to #SpeakFreely […]