Are Campus Conservatives Besieged? Not in Wisconsin

BY HANK REICHMAN It’s a common trope among conservatives and many media commentators that college and university campuses are liberal strongholds where students who hold conservative political views are intimidated from expressing them.  In Wisconsin last month this led to adoption of a  “Commitment to Academic Freedom and Freedom of Expression” policy designed to curtail…

“Free Speech” Policy Could “Chill” Protected Speech on UNC Campuses

BY MICHAEL BEHRENT The “free speech” policy currently  under consideration by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors could impose a “chill” on “constitutionally protected speech” on UNC campuses, according to a prominent First Amendment Scholar. Officers of the North Carolina Conference of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) recently spoke with Professor William P. Marshall…

The Problem with “Taking Offense”

BY AARON R. HANLON Aaron Hanlon is Assistant Professor of English at Colby College.  He writes regularly on issues related to free speech on campus, including recently in the New York Times. The notion that college student protesters are reacting to “offensive” speech has held outsized influence in national debates about free speech and student…

America’s Worst Newspaper Columnist?

BY HANK REICHMAN When the New York Times first announced in April that it was adding former Wall Street Journal conservative writer Bret Stephens to its stable of op-ed columnists — which already included the unctuous moralism of Ross Douthat and the simplistic pseudo-sociology of David Brooks — alarm bells went off.  David Roberts on…

Responding to Spencer

BY HANK REICHMAN What is the appropriate response when racists and neo-Nazis like Richard Spencer appear on campus?  One approach is, well, simply ignore them, or at the least don’t take them too seriously.  Bob Moser in the New Republic praises one questioner at Spencer’s Florida appearance last week for using mockery quite effectively, demanding…