The City University of New York’s proposed freedom of expression policy has been stalled by the Board of Trustees after members of the community, professors and students raised censorship concerns.
Let's say the local school board has an "open mike hour" where members of the public can offer comments.
A Texas graduation speaker goes off-script to complain about being forced to water down the religious message of his speech, and the school unplugs the microphone. A Florida commencement speaker pauses, and -- fearing a deviation from the prepared text -- his principal stops the speech and has him removed by security guards. An Oklahoma graduation speaker lets loose with an improvised wisecrack using the word "hell," and the school withholds her diploma.Each year around this time, some of America's top high school graduates get an unwanted parting "lesson" from their schools about the limits of the First Amendment.Although the Supreme Court famously told us in 1969 that students do not "shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate," the Court's subsequent pronouncement in Hazelwood School District v.
Groups representing college trustees and faculty are each calling for colleges to improve the climate for freedom of speech and press, which has been under attack not just from administrative censorship but from student and faculty pressure as well.