In this webinar, FIRE Vice President of Programs Peter Bonilla hosts Joe Cohn, FIRE’s Legislative and Policy Director, and professor Donald Downs, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, for a discussion of the current legislative climate for free speech and academic freedom. We discuss a number of different legislative proposals at state legislatures around the country, including bills that would mandate viewpoint diversity at public universities and target the use of critical race theory in institutional programming, while also discussing larger lessons and insights that can be taken from various conflicts between government and the academy over the years.
This discussion was recorded on March 16, 2021.
For further reading:
- Legislative efforts to address teachings on race pose threats to academic freedom (Mar. 12, 2021)
- Legislative interference in the classroom threatens academic freedom (Feb. 9, 2021)
- As predicted, executive order casts chilling effect—but universities need not cancel diversity trainings (Oct. 23, 2020)