Times Writers Group: President’s speech had no purpose

October 5, 2007

The president of , Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was recently invited to speak at Columbia in New York City, an event from which controversy continues to stir.

What would happen if St. Cloud University or St. John’s had a chance to host a terrorist, someone with whom we are at war? What if we had the opportunity to have Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il or Robert Mugabe speak here?

Kathy Uradnik, a professor of political science at St. Cloud State, said, “The real issue is not whether there is or should be free speech as required by the First Amendment, but rather when a university should support and promote the underlying ideal (presented by John Stuart Mill and others) that more speech leads to truth and, it follows, to freedom...