The states that have already passed legislation in defense of the freedom of speech on campus include Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Colorado, Utah and Arizona. Lawmakers in 16 other states, including Texas, California, New York, Washington and others, are currently campaigning to pass similar free speech legislation.
The last state to pass such a measure was the state of Florida, whose governor Rick Scott recently signed a bill banning “free speech zones” on college campuses. In addition, the legislation also gives individuals the ability to sue universities if they violate their “expressive rights,” which will undoubtedly curb the amount of political censorship that occurs on campuses across the country.
Kentucky is following in Florida’s footsteps, as the state has recently passed legislation that would protect the First Amendment free speech rights of both students and faculty at colleges and universities. “The problem with this free speech area is it’s not even close to a lot of activity on campus,” explained Republican State Senator Will Schroder, a sponsor of the bill. “It really restricts individuals to a certain location.”
But the problem with these so-called “free speech areas” that Sen. Will Schroder was referring to is not just that they aren’t close to a lot of activity on campus, but that they are often extremely small spaces – far too small for any individual or group to effectively get their message out. Some colleges even have square boxes taped to the sidewalk for students to stand in if they wish to practice their First Amendment rights. It goes without saying that our liberties shouldn’t be restricted to certain “zones” or “areas;” they should be universal and recognized from coast to coast, and that includes every square inch of every college in the country.
States that have yet to pass or even propose campus free speech legislation include the following: Oregon, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, Indiana, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont and Maine. With any luck, these states will jump on the bandwagon sooner rather than later, because if there’s one thing that thousands of schools across the country aren’t so good at, it’s upholding and protecting the freedom of speech for all students.
Just a few days ago, a college student from Indiana University of Pennsylvania by the name of Lake Ingle was thrown out of class for arguing that there are only two genders, despite the claim of liberals and social justice warriors alike believe that gender exists on a “spectrum” and that it’s more than just “male” and “female.” (Related: This study reveals why intolerant university leftists cannot see reality – they have been trained to cognitively miss details that don’t conform to liberalism.)
After Lake’s professor asked the female students in the class for their opinions on the matter, not a single one spoke up, prompting Lake to raise his hand and throw his own opinion into the discussion. “My professor pretty much just tried to shut me up because she was just letting women speak,” he explained. “I brought up the fact that biologists don’t agree that there’s more than two genders and I said the wage gap she’s referring to – 77 cents on the dollar – that even the New York Times debunked that.” (Related: Harvard is now punishing students who join single-gender social clubs on campus.)
Not long after the incident, Lake received a letter from the university informing him that he was barred from attending class, and that he had to write an apology letter to his professor for his “disrespectful references to the validity of trans identity and experience.”
Hopefully there will come a day when all 50 states pass free speech legislation for colleges and universities, but until then, this blatant censorship of conservative points of view will sadly continue.