Saint Cloud State University: Thought Reform and Suppression of Free Speech

Category: Free Speech
Schools: Saint Cloud State University

At Saint Cloud State University the campus newspaper, the University Chronicle quoted student Christopher Monson, who argued that a public university had obligations to public access and legal equality: it would be illegal not to allow such persons as credit card companies on campus, just as "not allowing blacks on campus" would be illegal. Four days later, SCSU President Suzanne Williams sent an e-mail message to the university community, writing that the student had made an "unfortunate analogy." The next day, President Williams announced, again by e-mail, that the offending student would be undergoing "sensitivity training" at the campus Multicultural Center. FIRE got involved and national publicity and widespread media coverage followed her statements. Williams then told the St. Cloud Times that she never recommended sensitivity training, which is blatantly untrue, and the case was dropped. Later that year, she stepped down as president of the university.

  • FIRE Challenges Campus Judicial System, Political Correctness Organization Seeks to Rectify Perceived Injustices

    December 1, 2000

    Dean & Provost When students appear at disciplinary hearings, judicial affairs professionals may be playing with FIRE. Since the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, Inc. opened its doors last year, it has challenged the way campuses govern their students. “At most universities, judicial systems are unaccountable kangaroo courts,” says Alan Charles Kors, director and co-founder of FIRE and a history professor at University of Pennsylvania. FIRE has already been involved in more than 100 cases of alleged campus violations of freedom of speech, legal equality, due process, and religious liberty at nearly 80 institutions. Kors believes campuses should be […]

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  • Defending Free Thought and Expression

    June 5, 2000

    By John Silber Christopher Monson is a student at Saint Cloud State University in Minnesota. Recently the student newspaper quoted him as arguing that a state university had obligations to public access, and that banning credit card solicitors might have the same legal consequences as banning blacks. The president of SCSU, Suzanne Williams, took exception to this analogy, and sent an e-mail to all members of the SCSU community in which she announced that “the University finds the statement—intentional or not—to be demeaning and totally inappropriate. We are looking into the quote to determine the circumstances, and to take whatever […]

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  • Lawless University President Tramples the First Amendment

    April 18, 2000

    ST. CLOUD, MN—The president of St. Cloud State University (SCSU) was prosecutor, judge, and jury in an unconstitutional assault upon the free speech rights of an undergraduate student. Christopher Monson was quoted in the student newspaper in favor of allowing credit card companies to solicit on campus. His words, unacceptable to the PC language police, landed him in sensitivity training. On December 9, 1999, the SCSU campus newspaper, the University Chronicle quoted Monson, who argued that a public university had obligations to public access and legal equality: it would be illegal not to allow such persons on campus, just as […]

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