Policy 01.040: Statement of Commitment to Free Expression

Relevant excerpt

Freedom of expression is the foundation of an Ohio university education. Open debate and deliberation, the critique of beliefs and theories, and uncensored academic inquiry are all essential to our shared mission of discovery and dissemination of knowledge.

At times, our community members will encounter arguments and perspectives with which they disagree, or worse, that are repugnant and offensive. Some such expressions may be condemned as “hate speech.” Although those views are deeply at odds with the values of Ohio university, courts have held that such speech generally is protected by the First Amendment and cannot be punished or regulated based on its content. (see “Forms, References and History” k.) More importantly, our community is stronger when such views are openly probed, contested, and rebutted.

Ohio university does not shield its community from speech on the basis that it is uncomfortable, wrong, or offensive. Rather, Ohio university seeks to prepare each student to engage thoughtfully and passionately with all ideas, even with disagreeable views.

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