New FIRE Video: Nat Hentoff on Free Speech, Jazz, and FIRE

October 8, 2014

NEW YORK, October 8, 2014—Today, FIRE is proud to announce the release of our newest video, an interview with legendary critic and civil libertarian Nat Hentoff. In the interview, recorded this past April at his New York City residence, Hentoff explains the unique power of the First Amendment, discusses his lifelong love of jazz, and emphasizes the importance of FIRE’s work on our nation’s campuses.

“The reason FIRE is important is no other organization—and I’ve been reporting about FIRE almost since the day it was born—focuses so entirely on making the new generation, and thereby the generations to follow, aware of how important it is to keep this First Amendment alive,” says Hentoff in the wide-ranging interview. “What FIRE does is, in a sense, fire up these students on college campuses who are being punished for their own expression.”

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You may also view a full transcript of the video.

FIRE is proud to have earned Hentoff’s support throughout our 15 years of defending student and faculty rights. Hentoff is a member of FIRE’s Board of Advisors and served as the honorary dinner chairman for FIRE’s 10th anniversary gala in 2009. He returns as a member of the honorary host committee for FIRE’s 15th anniversary celebration, to be held in New York City on Thursday, October 23, 2014.

Join FIRE on October 23 and help support our work with renowned free speech advocates like Nat Hentoff! You can learn more about FIRE’s 15th anniversary celebration by visiting

FIRE is a nonprofit educational foundation that unites civil rights and civil liberties leaders, scholars, journalists, and public intellectuals from across the political and ideological spectrum on behalf of individual rights, due process, freedom of expression, academic freedom, freedom of association, and rights of conscience at our nation’s colleges and universities. FIRE’s efforts to preserve liberty on campuses across America can be viewed at


Robert L. Shibley, Senior Vice President, FIRE: 215-717-3473;