Free speech is a constitutionally protected right for all Americans—and those attending colleges and universities are no exception.
The Supreme Court has held that “speech may not be banned on the ground that it expresses ideas that offend.”
Harmful and threatening speech has no place at an institution of higher learning.
Students and faculty alike should feel as though they are safe to express their ideas, but this does not mean that they are safe from other’s ideas, however uncomfortable that may seem.
In Alabama, the current status of free speech on campus is far from perfect. Policymakers should inquire into campus speech policies across the state, and enact legislation that safeguards the First Amendment rights of students at all public institutions of higher education.