October 25, 2012 11:50AM

Free Speech Week, Day 4

The New York Times has a column today about free speech on campus. Here is an excerpt:

Since the 1980s, in part because of “political correctness” concerns about racially insensitive speech and sexual harassment, and in part because of the dramatic expansion in the ranks of nonfaculty campus administrators, colleges have enacted stringent speech codes. These codes are sometimes well intended but, outside of the ivory tower, would violate the constitutional guarantee of freedom of speech. From protests and rallies to displays of posters and flags, students have been severely constrained in their ability to demonstrate their beliefs. The speech codes are at times intended to enforce civility, but they often backfire, suppressing free expression instead of allowing for open debate of controversial issues.

The author, Greg Lukianoff, is president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).

Since this is Free Speech Week, let me note that two Cato scholars, Nat Hentoff and Harvey Silverglate are also affiliated with FIRE because of their strong commitment to free speech on campus.