Neal Hutchins, professor of higher education at the Univ. of Mississippi, predicts that the Wisconson State Assembly’s campus speech bill will have a chilling effect on protest because it mandates penalties against student who disrupt speakers, giving institutions little discretion over this issue. FIRE has come out against this provision, and the ACLU has opposed a similar provision in a North Carolina bill.
Johns Hopkins University received $150 million for an interdisciplinary initiative to foster the discussion of controversial political issues. The gift establishes the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Agora Institute, which will have a new building on campus and employ 21 scholars each year.
At the National Association of College and University Attorneys, a five-person panel, which included two law professors and Greg Lukianoff, discussed how students interpret the First Amendment. Panel members also discussed why students today may be less tolerant of opinions that make them uncomfortable, and whether faculty members ought to include freedom of speech in the curriculum.
We published an essay by Yale senior Finnegan Schick on the intrusion of politics into classrooms, and Jeremy Willinger wrote about Zachary Wood’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Jon Haidt wrote about professors fearing mob intimidation from both sides of the political spectrum, pleading university administrators to “stop giving in to mobs and their demands.”