We have previously discussed how universities have not only curtailed free speech but treated free speech as a threat to students. Nothing captures that trend as vividly as a sign (posted on the site Campus Reform) informing Colorado State University (CSU) students that there are 17 different departments or resources to help them if they are “affected by a free speech event.” Free speech is now treated like STDs and violence on campus with its own trauma-related or protective program. Despite the inherent message of the harmful effects of free speech, I still prefer such a program to a policy of speech censorship or curtailment. However, some of the “resources” appear to be ways to report “incidents of bias” and offenses for university action.
The sign reads, “If you (or someone you know) are affected by a free speech event on campus, here are some resources.”
Those resources include the Dean of Students, Office of Equal Opportunity, Multicultural Counseling, Incidents of Bias Reporting, the Office of Equal Opportunity, the Vice President of Inclusive Excellence, and a Victim’s Assistance Hotline.
It is perfectly reasonable for a university to post signs encouraging students to report incidents of racism or threats. However, the listing of resources to address the trauma from free speech events reinforces the view that free speech itself is a threat on campus.
We previously discussed the concern over the rising generation of censors on our student governments and journals. We recently discussed how Emory’s student body refused to recognize a free speech group because of “potential and real harm” that would come from free speech events. A CNN host called for censorship as a form of “hard reduction.”
The alleged harm (and need for action) seems to differ dramatically on the ideological position of the speaker. I have defended faculty who have made similarly disturbing comments “detonating white people,” denouncing police, calling for Republicans to suffer, strangling police officers, celebrating the death of conservatives, calling for the killing of Trump supporters, supporting the murder of conservative protesters and other outrageous statements. I also defended the free speech rights of University of Rhode Island professor Erik Loomis, who defended the murder of a conservative protester and said that he saw “nothing wrong” with such acts of violence.
Even when faculty engage in hateful acts on campus, however, there is a notable difference in how universities respond depending on the viewpoint. At the University of California campus, professors actually rallied around a professor who physically assaulted pro-life advocates and tore down their display. In the meantime, academics and deans have said that there is no free speech protection for offensive or “disingenuous” speech. CUNY Law Dean Mary Lu Bilek showed how far this trend has gone. When conservative law professor Josh Blackman was stopped from speaking about “the importance of free speech,” Bilek insisted that disrupting the speech on free speech was free speech. (Bilek later cancelled herself and resigned after she made a single analogy to acting like a “slaveholder” as a self-criticism for failing to achieve equity and reparations for black faculty and students). We also previously discussed the case of Fresno State University Public Health Professor Dr. Gregory Thatcher who recruited students to destroy pro-life messages written on the sidewalks and wrongly told the pro-life students that they had no free speech rights in the matter.
The CSU sign reaffirms the view of free speech as potentially harmful as well as the necessity of close monitoring and reporting on its use on campus. It is treated like a dangerous controlled substance. There was a time when universities relished the range of diversity in viewpoints as essential to a true intellectual community. Now we seem to be raising a speech-phobic generation that includes free speech trauma programs.
46 thoughts on “CSU’s Free Speech Trauma Program: University Posts 17 Different Resources to Help Students Deal With Opposing Views”
******* WHO DECIDES WHAT SPEECH IS “HARMFUL”? ********
The radical Left should be really careful how they answer this one. Here are just a few examples why:
There WILL be a time, in the near future, when radical Islam Terrorists try to kill Americans. Consequently, some dumb Americans will respond by racially-profiling, discriminating against, and/or otherwise hurting innocent Muslims who will be called things like “terrorists”, “insurrectionists”, “murderers”, etc. And that is when our woke Media overlords & Activist-Judges will decry/outlaw such speech as “harmful”.
– – – This will be very bad result for all those folks who sling such names (and with abandon) at their GOP-looking neighbors.
Or how about when Lefties figure out (and they soon will) that they can use their Perpetual Victim Cards to have that same Media & Judiciary shut down anti-CRT speech & even related Laws? They need only say loud enough how it hurts them + may even incite dangerous reaction or retaliation to constantly be called things like “racist”, “nazi”, or “tyrant”.
It’s going to take lawsuits and the awarding of massive punitive damages to get the attention of universities that trample on 1st amendment rights. Then, maybe they’ll begin to change course.
As our parents (infrequently) said to us when we complained, had our feelings hurt, had disagreements with friends, etc.: “poor babies!” This age-group has spoiled – especially by its parents. These youngsters were always in the right and never wronged; the disgusting saga continues as these disgusting places of so-called “higher” learning continue to let the babies be victims – here, of all things, of free speech exercised by others.
Child why are you crying, Mommy asked?
Darren called me a Weenie.
What did you do?
I told my teacher.
What did she do?
She made Darren sit in the Dunce Corner.
So why are you crying?
Because everyone started teasing me for being a pampered baby, I’m not a pampered baby, am I?
No child, Darren is an awful monster I’ll talk with the teacher and have Darren removed from you class.
Thank You Mommy, I don’t like Darren he’s mean.
This is pure nonsense but a prime example of the College life in today’s World.
And when that child grows up and goes off to college, takes out a student loan for said college costs, can’t get a high paying job because their degree has no useful benefit (can’t fix a toilet) and has problems paying the loan, just remember those 17 departments and resources increased the cost of said college education. I thought furthering one’s education was to become employable and to learn to get along in society (the “college experience”). I now know I am wrong. And I now know that some children will not be able to enter and get along in society with a lot of different people with a lot of different opinions. What a waste of money. I am going to vote yes for the new school building for my local VOC-TECH high school.
It is unconstitutional for a citizen of the United States to be “affected” by the fully constitutional freedom of speech.
Being “affected” by free speech must be found to be an act of insurrection in the United States, including a penalty of deportation and exile.
Colorado State University is a public university which exists under the unlimited dominion of the Constitution of the United States.
Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.
No inferior governmental level shall deny citizens their absolute and unalienable freedom of speech.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
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