Yesterday, FIRE launched our new Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project, a national effort to eliminate unconstitutional speech codes through targeted First Amendment lawsuits. Within minutes of the announcement, major media outlets were spreading the word, and over the past 24 hours, the nation’s top newspapers have reported on this big step in the fight for free speech on campus. Here is some of yesterday’s and today’s news coverage of Stand Up For Speech and the four lawsuits FIRE brought yesterday with the help of law firm Davis Wright Tremaine:
- The New York Times, “Advocacy Group Sues 4 Universities in Challenge to Policies It Says Curb Free Speech,” Jennifer Medina
- The Wall Street Journal, Best of the Web Today: “Free Speech Movement,” James Taranto
- USA Today, “Campus free-speech limits targeted by lawsuits,” Mary Beth Marklein and Hoai-Tran Bui
- Los Angeles Times, “Students challenge free-speech rules on college campuses,” “Student sues Citrus College District over free speech restrictions,” Teresa Watanabe
- The Washington Post, “Colleges are slowly taking away your First Amendment rights,” Robert Shibley
- Chicago Tribune, “2 professors sue CSU in blog case,” Juan Perez Jr.
- Washington Examiner, “The good fight: FIRE suing colleges and universities over speech codes,” Michael Barone
- Reason, “In Major Announcement, FIRE Says It Will Sue Every College With a Speech Code Until Speech Codes Die Forever,” Robby Soave
- The Chronicle of Higher Education, “Lawsuits Accuse 4 Colleges of Unconstitutional Restrictions on Speech,” Sara Jerde
- Inside Higher Ed, “Suing Over Speech,” Jake New
- The Huffington Post, “Trouble Over T-Shirts Just Landed 2 State Universities In Court,” Tyler Kingkade
FIRE President Greg Lukianoff also shared his powerful announcement speech from yesterday’s National Press Club conference in The Huffington Post. We’ll have a video of the event up on our website soon. And if you missed it, be sure to check out our latest video, in which Modesto Junior College student Robert Van Tuinen talks about his experience filing suit after MJC staff stopped him from handing out copies of the Constitution on Constitution Day last year.
If you’re a student and you’ve been censored by your college and university, FIRE wants to help! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit the Stand Up For Speech website to learn more about the project.
FIRE applauds the student-plaintiffs who have already joined us in standing up for speech on campus—these brave students are doing a service not just for students at their colleges, but for students across the country.
Check back to The Torch for more updates, and help spread the word by tweeting #standup4speech.
Schools: Chicago State University Modesto Junior College Citrus College Ohio University Iowa State University Cases: FIRE’s Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project Citrus College – Stand Up For Speech Lawsuit Chicago State University – Stand Up For Speech Lawsuit Iowa State University – Stand Up For Speech Lawsuit Ohio University – Stand Up For Speech Lawsuit Modesto Junior College: Students Barred from Distributing Constitutions on Constitution Day