So far in 2021, more than 750 people came to FIRE when their rights were in jeopardy.

Hear their stories — and how we're fighting back — by subscribing today.

So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast

So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast logo

SUBSCRIBE BY EMAIL


Recent Podcasts

So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast
Ep. 144 Matt Taibbi, Nadine Strossen, and Amna Khalid respond to ‘On the Media’ free speech critiques 

Sep 16, 2021

Last month, On the Media, a popular radio program from New York City’s WNYC, aired an episode that questioned free speech values and challenged so-called “free speech absolutism.” On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by Matt Taibbi, Nadine Strossen, and Amna Khalid, who provide direct responses to many of the free speech critiques made in On the Media’s program.

Last month, On the Media, a popular radio program from New York City’s WNYC, aired an episode that questioned free speech values and challenged so-called “free speech absolutism.”

On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by Matt Taibbi, Nadine Strossen, and Amna Khalid, who provide direct responses to many of the free speech critiques made in On the Media’s program.

Show notes:

www.sotospeakpodcast.com
Follow us on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/freespeechtalk
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sotospeakpodcast
Email us: sotospeak@thefire.org

Read more


So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast
Ep. 143 Politics and thought reform in K-12 education 

Sep 02, 2021

Are America’s schools becoming too political?  FIRE’s Director of High School Programs argues, “yes.” Bonnie Kerrigan Snyder is an educator with over 20 years of experience, and she’s worried by what she sees. Amidst controversies surrounding so-called Critical Race Theory, school walkouts, and standardized tests, Snyder increasingly hears reports of children “being indoctrinated, bullied, and harassed by their fellow students and teachers for not falling into line on various topics.”

Are America’s schools becoming too political? 

FIRE’s Director of High School Programs argues, “Yes.” Bonnie Kerrigan Snyder is an educator with over 20 years of experience, and she’s worried by what she sees.

Amidst controversies surrounding so-called critical race theory, school walkouts, and standardized tests, Snyder increasingly hears reports of children “being indoctrinated, bullied, and harassed by their fellow students and teachers for not falling into line on various topics.”

On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we discuss Snyder’s new book, “Undoctrinate: How Politicized Classrooms Harm Kids and Ruin Our Schools—And What We Can Do About It.”

Show notes:

www.sotospeakpodcast.com
Follow us on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/freespeechtalk
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sotospeakpodcast
Email us: sotospeak@thefire.org

Read more


So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast
Ep. 142 Alfred Hitchcock and Hollywood’s Production Code 

Aug 12, 2021

Hollywood’s Motion Picture Production Code, popularly referred to as the Hays Code, loomed over films in every stage of movie production from 1934 to 1968. Scripts were reviewed and altered. Actors and filmmakers were forced to redo entire scenes. Editors were asked to cut dialogue and scenes from films. Music was changed. Ultimately, directors had to be cognizant of the censors at all times.

Hollywood’s Motion Picture Production Code, popularly referred to as the Hays Code, loomed over films in every stage of movie production from 1934 to 1968. Scripts were reviewed and altered. Actors and filmmakers were forced to redo entire scenes. Editors were asked to cut dialogue and scenes from films. Music was changed. Ultimately, directors had to be cognizant of the censors at all times.

In this episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we interview three prominent guests to track the history of film censorship and the eventual demise of the Hays Code.

John Billheimer, author of “Hitchcock and the Censors (Screen Classics),” explains Alfred Hitchcock’s unique methods for dealing with controversial subject matter.

Laura Wittern-Keller is a professor in the History department at the University at Albany and author of several books on film censorship, including “Freedom of the Screen: Legal Challenges to State Film Censorship, 1915-1981” and “The Miracle Case: Film Censorship and the Supreme Court.”

Bob Corn-Revere, partner at Davis Wright Tremaine, is a frequent guest on the show. His forthcoming book “The Mind of the Censor and the Eye of the Beholder: The First Amendment and the Censor’s Dilemma,” is due out in October.

Show notes:

Read more


So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast
Ep. 141 Morris Ernst, Free Speech Renegade 

Jul 29, 2021

Morris Ernst may be the most influential free speech lawyer you’ve never heard of. He was the longtime general counsel for the ACLU, helped found the National Lawyers Guild, and just about single-handedly whittled away at obscenity laws in the United States. On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by University at Buffalo School of Law Professor Samantha Barbas to discuss her new book, “The Rise and Fall of Morris Ernst, Free Speech Renegade.”

Morris Ernst may be the most influential free speech lawyer you’ve never heard of. He was the longtime general counsel for the ACLU, helped found the National Lawyers Guild, and just about single-handedly whittled away at obscenity laws in the United States — even litigating the famous “Ulysses” case, which overturned a 13-year ban on James’ Joyce’s renowned novel.

But he was an enigma: A staunch anti-communist and sometimes red-baiter, a close confidant of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, an unofficial PR agent for the FBI, and, later in his life, a crusader against the relative sexual permissiveness of the 1960s and ‘70s.

On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by University at Buffalo School of Law Professor Samantha Barbas to discuss her new book, “The Rise and Fall of Morris Ernst, Free Speech Renegade.”

Show notes:

www.sotospeakpodcast.com
Follow us on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/freespeechtalk
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sotospeakpodcast
Email us: sotospeak@thefire.org

Read more


So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast
Ep. 140 Free speech, psychology, and madness 

Jul 15, 2021

On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by Stetson University Professor of Psychology Christopher J. Ferguson for a wide-ranging conversation about the psychology of censorship, the role of madness and eccentricity in shaping history, the effects of social media, the growing polarization and politicization of modern institutions, including academia, and more.

On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we are joined by Stetson University Professor of Psychology Christopher J. Ferguson for a wide-ranging conversation about the psychology of censorship, the role of madness and eccentricity in shaping history, the effects of social media, the growing polarization and politicization of modern institutions, including academia, and more.

Ferguson is the author of the new book “How Madness Shaped History: An Eccentric Array of Maniacal Rulers, Raving Narcissists, and Psychotic Visionaries.” He also co-authored “Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games is Wrong,” which was the subject of a past So to Speak episode.

Show notes:

www.sotospeakpodcast.com
Follow us on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/freespeechtalk
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sotospeakpodcast
Email us: sotospeak@thefire.org

Read more

LOAD MORE