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Dartmouth President to Step Down in 2009

Dartmouth President James Wright announced yesterday that he will be stepping down in June 2009. Longtime FIRE supporters may remember that President Wright ignited a free speech controversy on campus in 2001 after he issued an open letter to the campus—in the wake of a fraternity controversy—in which he stated that "it is hard to understand why some want still to insist that their ‘right' to do what they want trumps the rights, feelings, and considerations of others. We need to recognize that speech has consequences for which we must account." After FIRE wrote to President Wright to ask whether that statement constituted binding college policy, Dartmouth removed the letter from its website and reaffirmed its commitment to "the free exchange of ideas." As a result, FIRE upgraded Dartmouth's speech code rating from "red light" to "green light," where it remains today.

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