As Torch readers are aware, one of the initial lawsuits in FIRE’s Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project, Gerlich v. Leach, involves a challenge to Iowa State University’s unconstitutional trademark policy that ISU administrators have used to silence a student group advocating for the legalization of marijuana. Yesterday, the Iowa State Daily published a letter to the editor by Kenneth Currie, an ISU alumnus. ISU’s associate general counsel didn’t listen to us when we wrote him to say that ISU’s policies were unconstitutional. Maybe the administration will listen to Dr. Currie.
By Kenneth Currie BS, Political Science, 1969
As an alumnus of Iowa State, I am gratified to learn that Iowa State’s speech code is being challenged by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. However, I was distressed to learn that ISU had such a code in the first place. As the foundation has repeatedly pointed out, such codes consistently have been ruled unconstitutional by the federal courts. The college will lose this one — it doesn’t stand a chance. It needs to throw in the towel now rather than costing Iowa taxpayers and donors to the university the cost of a court fight. Until Iowa State does repeal its speech code, it need not bother this graduate with appeals for money.
Kenneth M. Currie, PhD