Boston’s WGBH News has just announced the “winners” of its 2014 Muzzle Awards, given to those who have particularly impeded freedom of speech over the past year. Formerly published in the Boston Phoenix, WGBH has adopted the awards and is continuing the tradition of “singl[ing] out the dramatic and the petty, the epic and the absurd.”
FIRE co-founder Harvey Silverglate and research assistants Daniel Schneider and Samantha Miller selected the recipients of the Campus Muzzle Awards. Introducing the winners, Harvey warns readers of the dangerous trend of censorship on America’s college and university campuses:
Campus censorship is particularly dangerous since it risks teaching students, who represent the next generation preparing to assume power and guide our nation, that all of those nice words about liberty and freedom contained in the First Amendment are simply red-white-and-blue bunting: there for the sake of appearance but of no real consequence.
Until the past few years, most campus censorship was the product of administrative overreach. More recently, there has been an increase in examples of censorship by faculty members. But most disturbing of late has been the proliferation of instances of students seeking to censor campus speakers or other students.
This year’s Campus Muzzles went to six institutions that have each earned coverage here on The Torch for their offenses against open debate and free expression and association on campus: Amherst College, Asnuntuck Community College, Brown University, Brandeis University, Northeastern University, and Yale University.
Click over to WGBH’s website to read more about the Muzzle winners.