The Speech Police Strike Again

Next week, the Board of Regents for the University of California will be meeting to discuss implementing a new right for all faculty and students.

The right not to have their feelings hurt.

Hurray for Liberty!

Now, they are ostensibly referring to this genius maneuver as “Principles Against Intolerance.”

The University of California is committed to protecting its bedrock values of respect, inclusion, and academic freedom. Free expression and the open exchange of ideas – principles enshrined in our national and state Constitutions – are part of the University’s fiber. So, too, is tolerance, and University of California students, faculty, and staff must respect the dignity of each person within the UC community.

Doesn’t it speak volumes that their bedrock values don’t seem to include teaching students anything?

Intolerance has no place at the University of California. We define intolerance as unwelcome conduct motivated by discrimination against, or hatred toward, other individuals or groups. It may take the form of acts of violence or intimidation, threats, harassment, hate speech, derogatory language reflecting stereotypes or prejudice, or inflammatory or derogatory use of culturally recognized symbols of hate, prejudice, or discrimination.

I’m sure the Jewish students who keep getting attacked by the Muslim students are delighted to hear this. Or, since cracking down on violence by Muslim students can be construed as “Islamophobia,” will they get a pass?

As Ed Morrissey at Hot Air points out, acts of violence and intimidation are already crimes. So why bother?

More from the Board of Regents:

Everyone in the University community has the right to study, teach, conduct research, and work free from acts and expressions of intolerance. The University will respond promptly and effectively to reports of intolerant behavior and treat them as opportunities to reinforce the University’s Principles Against Intolerance.

I wonder if that will extend to the College Republicans, Pro-Life groups, or Christian groups. Or, since some students are offended by Christians do they automatically have the right to shut the Christians up?

Does anybody else see the twisted Rube Goldberg mess these Regents are creating?

And to whom will fall the responsibility of policing “tolerance?” Will there be a Grand Arbiter of All that is Inclusive?

Eugene Volokh, a UCLA professor who teaches free speech law, religious freedom law, church-state relations law, among other things, wrote a piece in the Washington Post yesterday outlining the problematic nature of this cray-cray policy.

1. The policy specifically condemns the expression of particular viewpoints as “intolerant,” as having “no place at the University of California,” and a violation of others’ rights to be “free from … expressions of intolerance.” For instance, articulating a view that people with various intellectual disabilities are incapable of various intellectual tasks, or people with various physical disabilities are incapable of various physical tasks, would be condemned by the authority of the University. (“University leaders will take all appropriate steps to implement the principles.”)

Articulating a view that there are cultural (or even biological) differences between ethnic and racial groups in various fields — condemned by the authority of the University, without regard to the arguments for or against the particular assertion. It’s just an up-front categorical rule; whatever you want to say along these lines, we don’t want to hear it, we don’t care what your arguments are, we’ll condemn it, and faculty and students have a right not to hear it. Even “depicting” such a view, whatever that means, is “intolerant” and “has no place at the University.” [Emphasis mine]

Volokh points out the cleverly-crafted wording of this this policy where it says, “This statement shall not be interpreted to prohibit conduct that is related to the course content, teaching methods, scholarship, or public commentary of an individual faculty member or the educational, political, artistic, or literary expression of students in classrooms and public forums that is protected by academic freedom or free speech principles.”

In other words, by separating “public forum” from that which is not a public forum, it really is a set-up to control the lives of the students and faculty outside of the classroom.

Says Volokh:

A student group’s Web site isn’t a “public forum.” An e-mail exchange among a group of acquaintances about, say, supposed biological differences between racial groups isn’t in a “public forum” or “public commentary.” A conversation over lunch in the cafeteria isn’t public commentary or in a public forum. The “This statement shall not be interpreted …” proviso quite clearly doesn’t safeguard this sort of speech.

The bottom line is the Left is always about control. Control over what you learn, how you learn, what you can say, what you can’t say.

It is ironic to me that the 1960s Free Speech movement spawned on college campuses. Those same lovers of freedom grew up and wrested control of the universities away from those they believed were limiting their freedom of speech. And look at what they’ve done.

I’ve said before that the hippies of the 1960s never really had a problem with power and control. They just wanted to be the ones having the power to control.

And now that they do, their love of Free Speech from those bygone days goes right out the window.

There has never been a bigger fraud perpetrated on the people than this belief that the Left believes in “tolerance” and “inclusion.” George Orwell would be supremely impressed.

The Speech Police Strike Again

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One thought on “The Speech Police Strike Again

  • September 12, 2015 at 5:38 pm

    I’ve heard all my life that one day California is going to fall into the ocean. Why is it taking so long?

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