Praise for Free Speech at Virginia Schools in ‘Richmond Times-Dispatch’

By June 1, 2011

In response to Greg’s article on The Huffington Post commending the nation’s seven best colleges and universities for freedom of speech, the Richmond Times-Dispatch has offered glowing praise for the two Virginia schools that made the list (the University of Virginia (UVa) and the College of William & Mary) and for FIRE’s efforts in combating censorship on campuses nationwide.

The Dispatch illuminates one of the pillars we rely on so strongly to win cases:

FIRE’s advocacy is often effective, and always nonpartisan – it condemns all attacks on intellectual freedom regardless of political or ideological slant.

Noting the importance of this advocacy, the Dispatch states that "Only 14 of the 400 colleges and universities FIRE monitors have earned its green-light designation, meaning they impose no policies that endanger free speech on campus."

The Dispatch staff also remind us that UVa was founded by Thomas Jefferson, quoting him:

This institution will be based on the illimitable freedom of the human mind. For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.

We share in the Dispatch‘s happiness that both UVa and William & Mary share this spirit, and hope that schools across the country will heed this important principle from one of our nation’s founders.

Schools: University of Virginia The College of William and Mary