Can Political Correctness And Free Speech Coexist On Campus?

November 17, 2015

By Sam Wright at Above the Law

To the continuing annals of racism and its consequences in Missouri, let us add a new entry (previous entries include this and this).

As college and university students across the country have been ramping up protests claiming that their schools have long abetted systemic racism, students in Missouri have wrought an especially ferocious firestorm. At the University of Missouri, student protests led to the University President’s resignation on November 9. In the aftermath of that resignation, the activists whose work led to the President’s resignation took over various public spaces and used force to exclude the press. This was bad, and the activists realized this and reversed course the next day. But at the same time, the University’s Campus Police put out an egregious e-mail calling for “individuals who witness incidents of hateful and/or hurtful speech or actions to: Call the police immediately.” That email has been roundly condemned, but as far as I know it has yet to be repudiated. And in the meantime, various pundits have complained (including on these pages) about how students these days are whiny babies with no tolerance for opposing viewpoints. Many have couched the situation in terms of a claimed “right not to be offended” versus free speech; others, however, have challenged that framing...

Schools: University of Missouri – Columbia Cases: University of Missouri: Policing of “Hurtful” Speech