Freedom of Conscience

ISU Norml FIRE
Freedom of Conscience

FIRE protested the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s (UWEC) Student Senate’s decision to withhold student fee funding from any student organization that espouses a “particular ideological, religious, or partisan viewpoint.” The rule, passed in March of 2005, came after a controversy regarding the approval of a new student magazine, The Flip Side, in December of 2004.... Read more Read more


Freedom of Conscience

In October 2012, Trinity College’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved the recommendations of a report prepared by the college’s specially created Charter Committee for Building Social Community at Trinity College. The report includes a new Social Code that imposes dramatic new regulations on “social organizations,” primarily fraternities and sororities. Among its numerous requirements, the code... Read more Read more


Free Speech

FIRE protested University of South Carolina Professor Lynn Weber’s imposition of a political litmus test in order to succeed in “Women’s Studies 797: Seminar in Women’s Studies,” which was required of students who sought to earn a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies. Professor Weber’s “Guidelines for Classroom Discussion” required students to “acknowledge that racism, classism, sexism,... Read more Read more


Free Speech

The Attorney General of Virginia’s Office concluded that a new resolution from the Board of Visitors of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) that threatened freedom of speech and assembly at that public institution was unconstitutional and recommended that it not be implemented. The resolution would have declared that no individuals or organizations... Read more Read more


Free Speech

A Citrus College professor had compelled undergraduate students to write anti-war letters to President George W. Bush, penalizing the grades of students who dissented or refused to send the letters. After FIRE intervened, the Citrus College administration repudiated this outrage and resolved all issues in favor of freedom of conscience. Read more


Freedom of Conscience

The InterVarsity Multi-Ethnic Christian Fellowship at Rutgers University was banned from campus because of its rule that “leaders must seek to adhere to biblical standards and belief in all areas of their lives.” Rutgers ruled that allowing a religious student group to select its leadership on the basis of religion constituted discrimination. FIRE wrote to... Read more Read more


Free Speech

Harvard Law School considered adopting a new racial speech guide, under the typical guise of a harassment policy. FIRE chastised this illiberal move by such an elite institution. Read more


Free Speech

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... Read more Read more


Free Speech

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... Read more Read more


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... Read more Read more



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