Civil Discourse and Academic Freedom

Fighting for Free Speech on America’s Campuses

The free-speech watchdog FIRE is a familiar irritant to college administrators, but until this past year, the rest of the country wasn’t paying much attention. An “epic” year is what Greg Lukianoff, president and chief executive of the Foundation for…

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Stanford falls for BDS

After the resolution on divestment from Israel failed in the ASSU Senate last week following a heated debate, I wrote to The Stanford Daily with criticism of the resolution and the polarization it caused. I asked the senators to replace…

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Harvard’s Moment of Veritas

Last week, Lawrence H. Summers, the Charles W. Eliot University Professor and president emeritus of Harvard University, and former Secretary of the treasury, delivered a lecture on “Academic Freedom and Anti-Semitism” at Columbia University. He recalled that in 2002, when…

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Harvard, Israel, and Academic Freedom

This past week I delivered a lecture at Columbia University on academic freedom and anti-Semitism.  I argued that it is the essence of academic freedom that all members of our community can hold whatever views they wish and express them…

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A Mixed Report on Salaita Controversy

The University of Illinois violated key principles of shared governance and academic freedom in its review — and rejection — of the hiring of Steven G. Salaita, a faculty panel has found. The faculty panel’s report, released in December was…

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Academic Freedom and Academic Standards

A major debate has erupted concerning academic freedom and the responsibilities it entails. Last October, Steven Salaita received an offer to join the faculty in the American Indian Studies Program at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign. The offer was…

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The Freedom To Hear Offensive Speech

Much has been made of the spate of episodes on university campuses involving students and faculty seeking to block graduation speakers with whom they vehemently disagree. In the name of tolerance, transparency and “conversation,” too often the intolerant, a numerical…

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The Closing of the Collegiate Mind

There was a time when people looking for intellectual debate turned away from politics to the university. Political backrooms bred slogans and bagmen; universities fostered educated discussion. But when students in the 1960s began occupying university property like the thugs…

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The Closing of the Academic Mind

Harvard student Sandra Y.L. Korn recently proposed in The Harvard Crimson that academics should be stopped if their research is deemed oppressive. Arguing that “academic justice” should replace “academic freedom,” she writes: “If our university community opposes racism, sexism, and heterosexism, why…

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A triumph for the Boston Bombers

The two bombers who killed and maimed innocent people at the Boston marathon a year ago had come as refugees to America, from conflicts that America and her people did nothing to cause. They had been granted the privileges of a law-abiding…

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