FIRE’s mission is to defend and sustain the individual rights of students and faculty members at America’s colleges and universities. Sign up for the FIRE Update: We’ll let you know what happens next with Naomi’s club, Mike’s lawsuit, and anyone else facing censorship in FIRE’s twice-monthly newsletter.When Naomi tried to start an animal rights club at Missouri’s Truman State University, a committee of students and administrators rejected her club, citing concerns about the “emotional risk” to students. Now, FIRE is working to help Truman State understand the legal consequences of restricting student expression at a public university, and we hope that Naomi’s club will be approved soon. When Mike tried to poll his peers about legalizing marijuana, he wanted to spark a dialogue about civil liberties. Instead, he was deprived of his own: The campus police chief hauled him into his office and told him he should’ve been “smarter” than to exercise his First Amendment rights without the college’s permission. FIRE and Mike sued Jones College, where the school will now have to answer for its First Amendment violations in court. Astoundingly, administrators at Pierce College told Kevin that he was not allowed to hand out copies of the U.S. Constitution on his public college campus — a direct violation of that Constitution’s prohibition on government censorship. With FIRE’s help, Kevin took his case to court and won, vindicating the free speech rights of over 150,000 students in the process.
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