Author: jonathanturley

Will the Call for a Judicial Boycott Change Yale? Don’t Bet on it

Judge James C. Ho of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit recently made headlines when he publicly declared that he would no longer consider graduates of Yale Law School for clerkship positions due to the erosion of free speech rights at the university. In my view, Judge Ho is right on the merits but wrong on the means. I do not believe that these students should be the subject of a boycott for the failure of the faculty. However, the real question is whether such a boycott would even work. The answer is no. Even if the boycott were successful in dramatically reducing the prestigious clerkship for the school, it would likely not produce a change of behavior by the faculty. The sad reality is that many professors long ago jettisoned the interests of their students and their institution in favor of pursuing their own agendas.

Continue reading “Will the Call for a Judicial Boycott Change Yale? Don’t Bet on it”

Berkeley Student Groups Vote to Ban Any Speakers Who Support Israel or Zionism

There is an interesting free speech fight brewing at the University of California Berkeley Law School after nine student groups banned any speakers that support Israel or Zionism. The resolution adopted by the groups bar anyone who supports “Zionism, the apartheid state of Israel, and the occupation of Palestine.” Berkeley Law’s Dean Erwin Chemerinsky, a self-proclaimed Zionist, has observed that he himself would be banned from speaking to the groups under this resolution.

Continue reading “Berkeley Student Groups Vote to Ban Any Speakers Who Support Israel or Zionism”

YouTube Demonetizes Taibbi Video Showing Democrats Claiming Prior Elections Were Stolen

In the latest attack on free speech, YouTube had demonetized a video disseminated by former Rolling Stone and current Substack journalist Matt Taibbi. YouTube has previously shown open political bias in its censorship and demonetization policies. However, this is remarkably blatant in demonetizing a video that showed how Democrats previously claimed elections of Republicans were stolen — contradicting the narrative maintained in the media and on social media. Continue reading “YouTube Demonetizes Taibbi Video Showing Democrats Claiming Prior Elections Were Stolen”

“That’s Just Wild”: CNN and other Media Eagerly Report that Ginni Thomas Remains Unrepentant on the 2020 Election

We have previously discussed the calls of figures like Rep. Adam Schiff and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse to investigate Ginni Thomas, the wife of Associate Justice Clarence Thomas. I have expressed great concern over the calling of a spouse of a sitting justice who is among millions of Americans who believed that the 2020 election was stolen. I am not among them, but Thomas has every right to that belief and to advocate for actions in light of that belief. Yet, the Jan. 6 House Select Committee thrilled many on the left by demanding that she appear and answer for her advocacy. Continue reading ““That’s Just Wild”: CNN and other Media Eagerly Report that Ginni Thomas Remains Unrepentant on the 2020 Election”

New Book Reveals Democratic Decision to Abandon Due Process and Historical Precedent to Impeach Trump

Below is today’s column in Fox.com on the new disclosures in a new book on the Trump impeachment. The authors allege that House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and his staff raised virtually the same procedural objections that I made in my testimony about the House abandoning both historical precedent and due process guarantees. The book directly contradicts public statements made by Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff.

Here is the column:

UNC Holds First Amendment “Celebration” With One-Sided Condemnations of Free Speech Values

A professor at the University of North Carolina recently sent me an article on a “free speech event” held at the UNC Center for Media Law and Policy as part of the University’s 13th First Amendment Day celebration. What was striking about the free speech panel was not just that it was decidedly opposed to core free speech principles but it lacked a single panelist who spoke primarily in favor of free speech and against censorship. The panel, “Weaponizing First Amendment Rhetoric,” was clearly designed to offer the opposing view to traditional free speech and First Amendment values, but the lack of a dissenting voices allowed these views to go unchallenged. The panel could have served a more valuable purpose if they had allowed a single panelist to voice opposing views. Continue reading “UNC Holds First Amendment “Celebration” With One-Sided Condemnations of Free Speech Values”

University of Idaho Warns Professors About Discussing Abortion

There has been much talk in the last week about a letter from the University of Idaho General Counsel’s Office warning professors about discussing abortion. The warning is outgrowth of the No Public Funds for Abortion Act (Idaho Code Section 18-8701 through Section 18-8711). However, in my view, the media’s interpretation of the letter has exceeded any reasonable construction of the law. The law does not prevent professors from discussing abortion or supporting the right in their classes. Such a bar would be a serious denial of free speech and academic freedom principles. If that were the intention of sponsors, it should be denounced by people on both sides of this abortion debate. However, I do not see the evidence (as claimed by some) that this is a bar on professors either discussing abortion or expressing their support for the right. Continue reading “University of Idaho Warns Professors About Discussing Abortion”

“I Refuse to do this”: Leading NYU Psychologist Resigns from Research Group Over Mandatory DEI Statement

NYU professor and leading social psychologist Jonathan Haidt has resigned from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology due to the new requirement that members must include Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and anti-racism commitments if they want to present research at any conference.  It is the latest mandatory statement as a threshold requirement for academics and Haidt has refused in what could be a major confrontation to this field. Continue reading ““I Refuse to do this”: Leading NYU Psychologist Resigns from Research Group Over Mandatory DEI Statement”

Reefer Madness: The New York Law on Legalized Marijuana is a Triumph of Politics over Logic

Below is my column in the Wall Street Journal on the New York plan for subsidizing marijuana businesses with a preference for those with prior criminal records — or their family members. Legislators yielded to every political temptation in piling on dubious tax burdens and class-based preferences on this new market.

Here is the column: Continue reading “Reefer Madness: The New York Law on Legalized Marijuana is a Triumph of Politics over Logic”

Was Overturning Roe a “Blessing”? Only if Democrats Can Avoid the Details of the Right to Abortion

Below is my column in the Hill on the focus on abortion in this election, including the advocacy of an absolute right to abortion by many Democratic candidates.  President Joe Biden has voiced such a rule that any abortion decision should be left entirely to women.  When media pressed to confirm that the President does not believe that there should be any restrictions, the White House has simply refused to say. Thus, the President continues to campaign on the issue while refusing to answer questions on how he defines the right and any restrictions. It is the same approach that the President took during the last presidential campaign where he simply refused to state his position on court packing until after the election. This is an obviously important and valid issue to campaign on for the midterm elections.  Abortion is clearly rallying many to the polls due to the support for Roe. However, candidates of both parties should be clear on the meaning and scope of this right. Indeed, it is interesting to see the level of focus on this right with little substantive discussion on the scope of the right in campaigns.

Here is the column: Continue reading “Was Overturning Roe a “Blessing”? Only if Democrats Can Avoid the Details of the Right to Abortion”

Turley to Give the 28th Annual R. Dan Boulware Convocation at MWSU

On Tuesday, I have the great honor of giving the 28th Annual R. Dan Boulware Convocation at Missouri Western State University (MWSU). The keynote address, “Crisis of Faith: The Rise and Fall of Free Speech,” will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, September 27, 2022, at the Complex Arena. Admission is free for the public.  Continue reading “Turley to Give the 28th Annual R. Dan Boulware Convocation at MWSU”

Biden Repeats False Claims about AR-15 Velocity in Support of a Ban

We have previously discussed dubious constitutional and historical claims by President Joe Biden on gun bans. However, on Friday, he returned to a curious claim that he has made repeatedly: that “the bullet out of an AR-15 travels five times as rapidly as a bullet shot out of any other gun.” Conservative and gun rights publications have repeatedly shot down that claim but it does not seem to have any impact.  As with Biden’s false claim that certain weapons were banned from private ownership at the ratification of the Second Amendment, the President continues to make the same false claim on velocity speed. Continue reading “Biden Repeats False Claims about AR-15 Velocity in Support of a Ban”

New Zealand Prime Minister Calls for a Global Censorship System

C-Span screengrab

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is the latest liberal leader to call for an international alliance to censor speech. Unsatisfied with the unprecedented corporate censorship of social media companies, leaders like Hillary Clinton have turned from private censorship to good old-fashioned state censorship. Speech regulation has become an article of faith on the left. Ardern used her speech this week to the United Nations General Assembly to call for censorship on a global scale. Continue reading “New Zealand Prime Minister Calls for a Global Censorship System”

Washington Post Columnist Calls for the End of Impartiality and Balance in Journalism

In an age of rage, Washington Post columnist and MSNBC contributor Jennifer Rubin has long been a standout in her attacks on Republicans and conservatives: “We have to collectively, in essence, burn down the Republican Party. We have to level them because if there are survivors, if there are people who weather this storm, they will do it again.” However, her recent column shows that she has made a clean break not only from Republicans but from reason. The writer (long cited by the Post as their “Republican columnist” for balance) has called for the media to abandon balance and impartiality. Rubin is demanding that the media just become overt advocates in refusing to report both sides in the myriad of political issues in this election. Continue reading “Washington Post Columnist Calls for the End of Impartiality and Balance in Journalism”

Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks