I Support FIRE Because…

By December 29, 2012

Last week we asked FIRE’s Facebook fans to tell us why they support our work. The responses we got ranged from thoughtful to heartwarming to clever. See what our friends are saying about us:

I support FIRE because there is nothing more important to a free democratic society than free speech, and it is outrageous that free speech is prohibited on our college campuses, and that students are being conditioned to remain silent and fearful of engaging in open debate and in voicing their thoughts and opinions.

I support FIRE because students are not second-class citizens, becoming a student is not becoming a subject of the Accepted Royal Opinion of the Ivory Tower. We need the FIRE!

I support FIRE’s work because I want students (and administrators!) to remember that their rights and freedoms do not have to stop at universities’ doors.

I support FIRE because students have the power to change the world– when they’re uncensored!

I support and believe in FIRE because you have the courage to champion the idea of a free academy in the face of immense social and political pressures whether they be right or left!

I support FIRE because I like to play with intellectual matches!

I support FIRE because one is only truly educated when they can explain not only what they think, but why they think it. Freedom of expression is the only way to make people confront their largest intellectual dilemmas head-on. FIRE keeps colleges from taking the easy way out.

Of all the places on this planet where ideas should be exchanged, questioned and evaluated freely and openly it would be higher education.

I support FIRE because the organization has helped me! Last year, my university placed misconduct charges against me and a couple of my friends for doing an activism event that wasn’t in the free speech zone. The lawyers working with FIRE worked heavily with the Leadership Institute and us to get the charges dropped. Without FIRE, I’m almost certain I would have been expelled. Thank you for all you do!! It’s because of your organization that students like myself aren’t afraid to stand up and utilize our First Amendment rights!

I support FIRE because when I was punished for protesting Clemson’s free speech zones, FIRE stepped in and together we were able to make the university a safer place for free expression.

I support FIRE because I learned more about constitutional rights in one summer than I ever did in any course I’d ever taken in high school or undergrad. – FIRE Intern Maggie Rackl

They truly are, for a lot of young people, knights in wool-suits armed with mighty pens…

Thanks to FIRE, those of us who support enlightenment ideals, those of us with opinions that offend, those of us with something we’d like to say don’t have to feel alone, unprotected, and robbed of our rights whenever campus administrators try and turn us into stock photo images of ourselves. Containing expression is anti-human. Sometimes it takes a bit of FIREpower to help unleash it. The theatre of inaccurate ideas about what it means to live in a free society is becoming far too crowded.

If you are moved by these responses, or have reasons of your own to support our work, I encourage you to make a donation at www.thefire.org/donate before December 31. Thank you!