California School Plans to Put More Teeth into Censoring Speech

September 25, 2015

By Bob Kellogg at OneNewsNow

A California university system has constitutionalists and free-speech advocates up in arms because of a proposed speech policy which they say calls for outright censorship.

The University of California regents recently debated the proposed “Statement of Principles Against Intolerance,” which would ban speech that could be considered demeaning to ethnic or racial groups. William Creeley of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education says this the policy could easily be misused to curb free speech.

“That idea may sound well intentioned, but it would inevitably chill protective speech by allowing and even encouraging students to report statements that they didn’t agree with to authorities,” he says.

He says law already protects ethnic and minority individuals. “The [Statement of] Principles Against Intolerance would be the first step down a slippery slope toward banning speech simply because people disagreed with it,” he adds.

Creeley says the board of regents tabled the proposal, but not because they were concerned it could impinge on free speech. He says they want to put more teeth into it, which he argues is the wrong direction to take.