Something Very Strange is at Work on University Campuses
Most analyses of this new survey data pay insufficient attention to the one conclusion on which an overwhelming majority of college students agree: Sixty-eight percent of collegians “largely agree” that the campus climate today prevents some students from being able truly to speak their minds for fear of offending someone. Only 31% disagree.
Samantha Harris, director of policy research at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), said censorship used to come primarily from the top down but now is coming from students. “Students increasingly seem to be arriving on campus believing that there is a generalized right not to be offended beyond the actual right to be free from harassment and threats, this amorphous right to emotional safety. It’s a troubling trend,” she said.
Most professors and campus administrators want an open environment where all members of the academic community can express their ideas honestly. But, in recent years reports that students and faculty have been self-censoring their views in the classroom and on campus in general, have increased and are concerning.
If this is going on in your classroom, or at your university, then it is vital to know: WHICH students are feeling intimidated, about WHICH topics, and WHY? Are students primarily afraid of the professors, or of other students? Is it happening in all departments, or only in a few? Heterodox Academy’s Campus Expression Survey is an easy to administer tool for professors and administrators that provides a diagnosis, or X-ray, of what is going on in your classroom or on your campus.
Illiberalism’s War on Freedom of Speech: Ten Worst Campuses
In the escalating battle over college free speech don’t let anyone tell you it’s NO big problem. It’s a serious problem and when any organization, journalist, or website tries to downplay it, simply direct them to the Campus Reform website for an intervention. If that’s not a slap in their face that clears their head of any delusions they may have had in the past, they’re in denial and have no desire to be a sapient being.
"There are serious implications for what is going on here; universities are becoming havens of the closed minded," said Anne Neal, president of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA), which says it promotes academic standards and accountability. "What we are beginning to see is a heckler's veto."
Critics say is a growing intolerance for the exchange of ideas at American colleges and universities. During Trump’s first two years in office, battles over free speech on campuses have descended into violence across the nation. One wonders if the students were familiar with “doublespeak” and “Thought Police” and other concepts described in the works of George Orwell. They certainly haven’t read Voltaire, the Enlightenment thinker who once said, “I may disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
The casualties and victims of Illiberalism’s war on campus against freedom of speech are listed below and represent the tip of illiberalism iceberg. Here, the ideological battle grounds being fought where freedom of speech has most visibly been threatened are listed with no particularly ranking (with the exception of Berkeley and Yale who both take up the first and last positions on the list) and instead presented in alphabetical order. Being some of the most well-known campuses, these ten campuses have set a dangerous precedent for the new decade and other campuses to follow:
10 Worst Campuses List: Berkeley University Claremont McKenna College Essex County College Evergreen State College Harvard University Middlebury College Oberlin College University of Missouri-Kansas City Wesleyan University Yale University