FIRE Featured on Penn & Teller’s National Cable Show

June 1, 2005

FIRE Chairman Alan Charles Kors and FIRE President David French are featured in a recent episode of Penn & Teller’s incisive Showtime series, Bullshit!, dedicated to debunking popular misconceptions. The episode, called “College,” originally aired on May 30, and will run again this Friday, June 3, at 10:00 p.m. on Showtime. The program exposes the sham perpetrated by colleges that promise academic freedom but deliver selective repression. The hosts specifically highlight FIRE’s involvement in unmasking and fighting against the assault on individual liberty on our nation’s campuses.

Excerpts from a lengthy interview with Kors play a prominent narrative role in the program. Regarding the nature and effects of the current climate in higher education, Kors explains, “What is happening on our campuses in the name of progress and social engineering is the enemy of liberty and also of American progress in rights and in mutual respect on any deep and significant level.” French expresses concern that “people are so easily offended and they believe they have the right…to shut the person up who offended them.”

In another segment, responding to a recent university scandal involving false allegations of racism, Kors remarks, “These absurdities upon absurdities are teaching people that not just common sense but any semblance of freedom of expression is to be sacrificed on this altar of ‘Do not offend.’”

Host Penn Jillette delivers biting and passionate commentary throughout the entire program. His stirring defense of free speech is best summarized in his own words: “A free country is a marketplace of ideas, and college should be more free, not less!”