• Washington University: Mandatory University Viewpoint

    September 10, 2002
    Category: Free Speech, Freedom of Conscience

    The Student Bar Association (SBA) at Washington University School of Law voted 27-6, with 4 abstentions, to recognize Law Students Pro-Life. This vote overturned two earlier decisions that denied recognition to Law Students Pro-Life, the critical first vote having been 27-10-1 against the group. In a September 9, 2002 letter of rejection to Law Students Pro-Life, the SBA termed "the catching issue" what they labeled "the narrowness of the group’s interests and goals." The SBA "felt that the organization was not touching on all possible Pro-Life issues" because it did not have an "anti-death penalty" position in its constitution. FIRE […]

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  • Florida International University: Racial and Ethnic Restrictions for Class Enrollment

    February 6, 2002
    Category: Free Speech, Freedom of Conscience

    Florida International University (FIU), maintained ethnicity and race requirements for certain language classes. For example, certain Spanish courses limited enrollment to “Hispanic bilinguals educated in the U.S….whose mother tongue is Spanish,” “U.S. Hispanic bilinguals,” and “U.S. Hispanic Bilinguals Only.”; When informed of this policy FIRE explained its immorality and unconstitutionality to the administration. Following FIRE’s lengthy and quiet involvement, the policy was revised.

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  • James Madison University: Photographs Seized from Student Newspaper

    January 2, 2002
    Category: Freedom of Conscience

    In April 2010, the Rockingham County, Virginia, prosecutor Marsha Garst sent a large group of police officers to the offices of James Madison University (JMU) student newspaper The Breeze with an improper warrant to seize photographs of the annual Springfest party near campus. The party had drawn about 8,000 people—students and non-students—and caused substantial public disorder, including violence. There were dozens of arrests, and The Breeze was there taking pictures. The prosecutor seized about 1,000 photos, including many entirely irrelevant ones, but almost immediately gave them back because they had been seized improperly. After various negotiations, Garst apologized and had […]

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  • Bucks County Community College: Ideological Loyalty Oath for Professors

    February 22, 2001
    Category: Free Speech, Freedom of Conscience

    Professor of Sociology Myles Kelleher contacted FIRE after discovering that applicants for new faculty (and other) positions at Bucks County Community College (BCCC) would be required to “provide a brief statement of your commitment to diversity and how this commitment is demonstrated in your work,” and to “certify” their understanding that “any false or misleading statement on this application constitutes sufficient grounds for dismissal.” FIRE appealed to the court of public and moral opinion and wrote to BCCC’s Board of Trustees and its major donors. The story became the focus of local and national. Due to FIRE’s efforts this threat […]

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  • Monterey Peninsula College: Ideological Litmus Loyalty Oath for Professors

    July 7, 2000
    Category: Free Speech, Freedom of Conscience

    At Monterey Peninsula College Requirement, #14 of the school’s “Course Proposal Outlines” forced all professors to address diversity and multiculturalism: “Include a description of how course topics are treated to develop a knowledge and understanding of race, class and gender issues.” Professor of English David Clemens refused to go along with the multicultural loyalty oath and submitted a course outline for his English 38-on literature, technology, and human nature-with an objection to the Requirement. His course was not approved by the committee, and he was then criticized and attacked by the administration (including letters in local newspapers). FIRE mounted a […]

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