The climate on today’s college campuses has reached peak crisis. Students are told not only what kinds of T-shirts they can wear or what types of clubs they can join, but also, far too often, what opinions they can hold. Schools continue to enforce blatantly unconstitutional policies and indulge in dangerous new forms of illiberalism that encourage peer-initiated censorship and ideological conformity. And sadly, many students have become willing participants in this culture. More and more, we see students who believe they have a right not to be offended, who call for emotional “safety” over free speech, and who demand comfort over dialogue. Instead of just disagreeing with someone’s ideas or opinions, many demand that those with differing ideas not be able to share—or even think—the “wrong” things.
As the country’s premier campus free speech advocacy organization, FIRE is the only group positioned to combat this illiberal culture that is so openly hostile to our most cherished liberties. And we’ve proven that we can do it. Since our founding, we’ve secured 415 victories at 263 schools on behalf of over 6 million students and professors. Just this year, we’ve sponsored a lawsuit against the Department of Education aimed at restoring campus due process rights, coordinated two new Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project lawsuits, won dozens of defense and policy victories on behalf of thousands of students and professors, and had our issues highlighted in a slew of major media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, The Economist, and The New Yorker.
Our dedicated staff is working tirelessly to bring free inquiry and open debate—for everyone—back to our campuses. But we’re able to do so only with support from our generous donors. Please pledge your commitment to free speech, due process, religious liberty, and free thought with a gift to FIRE’s 2015–16 Annual Fund before June 30. You can help us bring unfettered discourse and the free and open exchange of ideas back to our campuses—work that’s never been more urgent.