You Can’t Say That Here!

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Many cases of censorship are ideological. The Tufts University campus newspaper published an ad paid for by a student who thought the school’s “Islamic Awareness Week” painted too rosy a picture of Islam. The ad quoted verses from the Koran such as: “Therefore strike off their [unbelievers’] heads and strike off every fingertip of them.” It mentioned the punishment by death of homosexuals in some Muslim countries, and quoted an Islamic theologian’s opinion that “marriage is a form of slavery; the woman is the man’s slave and her duty therefore is absolute obedience.” Another student filed a harassment complaint, and Tufts “made free speech history by being the first institution in the United States to find someone guilty of harassment for stating verifiable facts directed at no one in particular.”

Administrations invent rules so they can go after student groups they don’t like. One Florida community college stopped a Christian group from screening The Passion of the Christ on the grounds that the film was “controversial” and “R-rated.” It soon came to light that the college had sponsored an R-rated movie just the previous year, and was hosting a production of Fucking for Jesus, described as “a piece about masturbating to an image of the Christian messiah.”

Students and faculty can be punished merely for referring to guns or violence, on the grounds that such talk is a “threat.” One student who gave a class presentation on the benefits of concealed-carry laws was reported to the police by his professor.

One popular technique for squelching speech is to designate an area on campus as the “free speech zone.” Such zones are often obscure corners of the campus. At Texas Tech, which has 28,000 students, the “free speech zone” is a tiny gazebo. A waggish mathematician computed that if all students wanted to use the gazebo at the same time, they would have to be crushed down to the density of Uranium 238.

(American Renaissance, January 17, 2014).

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