Berkeley Student Paper Whines Over Free Speech Protection

"Did it ever occur to University of Wisconsin’s board of regents that heckling itself is a form of free speech?"

A student paper at UC Berkeley is complaining that free speech rules could lead to hate speech. Berkeley, once the home of the free speech movement, has over recent years become ground zero in the fight to shut down conservative speakers on campus.

After the University of Wisconsin approved a new policy last week supporting free speech and promising punishment for those that use violence to disrupt events on campus, The Daily Californian, UC Berkeley's independent student paper, blasted the idea.

"Did it ever occur to University of Wisconsin’s board of regents that heckling itself is a form of free speech?" the paper's editorial asked.

Of course the new policy doesn't punish people that merely heckle but rather those that repeatedly use violence and disorderly conduct to shut down events.

"A formal investigation and disciplinary hearing is required the second time a formal complaint alleges a student has engaged in violent or other disorderly misconduct that materially and substantially disrupted the free expression of others," the policy reads.

The policy advocates suspension after two such incidents and expulsion after three such events but also provides for a full and fair due process that can see students appeal any discipline.

Due process, protecting the right for free speech....it's all too much for the snowflakes at The Californian.

These restrictions would effectively turn college campuses into safe spaces for bigoted speech, actively muffling students threatened by the likes of Milo Yiannopoulos.  

And according to these students, the future leaders of America, protecting free speech for some means taking it away from others:

The same people that tout their commitment to free speech are using it as a cover to curtail the First Amendment rights of marginalized students.  

The editors of the paper are essentially advocating "free speech for me, not for thee" which seems to a prevalent school of thought among the political left on campuses these days. The editorial also shows they didn't read, or at least understand the policy. Tyler Brandt, the president of Young americans for Liberty at UW made that point in an interview with Campus Reform.

“The Editorial Board could not be more wrong about this policy. I actually question if they even read the language of the policy adopted,” Brandt continued. “In punishing a ‘protester,’ the action must have ‘materially and substantially disrupted the free expression of others.’ The language is pretty clear: protesting is not the same as materially and substantially disrupting others’ free speech.”  

Hopefully the policy adopted by UW becomes part of a pattern of schools actually defending the free speech of all students on campus and not just those that support views acceptable to the far left.

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