‘Cato Unbound’ Series Enters ‘Conversation Phase’ as Greg Responds to Posner, Ross

January 15, 2016

Cato Unbound’s debate series highlighting “Free Speech on College Campuses” entered its “conversation phase” today, with FIRE President and CEO Greg Lukianoff having the first opportunity to respond to critiques of his lead essay on the topic.

Greg’s original piece, “Free Speech on Campus Has Been in Trouble for a Long Time,” kicked off the Cato Institute-sponsored series January 4. Cato characterizes each lead essay as “a big-picture topic by an important thinker.”

Greg’s essay, which detailed the dangers posed by speech codes on campuses, was followed by responses from University of Chicago Law School professor Eric Posner, and George Washington University Law School professor Catherine J. Ross.

In today’s first of several planned responses, Greg takes on Posner’s assertion that, as Posner’s essay title suggests, “Campus Free Speech Problems Are Less Than Meets the Eye.” In that piece, Posner wrote that Greg “exaggerates the [free speech] problem and unfairly blames universities when the problem really lies with students.”

Today, Greg challenged that statement, citing 17 years’ worth of FIRE case history to back up the claim that administrators do pose a serious threat to free expression on campus. Greg also criticizes Posner for making anecdotal claims “based solely on his experience as a professor at the University of Chicago” without any broader evidence.

Click over to read the full response, “Getting Started: Where Posner and I Agree (and Disagree),” on Cato Unbound’s website.