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A Voltaire Moment for Liberals

Defending the Right for All to Speak Freely


Friday, March 28, 2014
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I am a lifelong liberal, a member of the ACLU, and pro-choice. I was arrested in a peaceful sit-in in Isla Vista protesting the curtailment of free assembly rights during the “troubles” of 1970. As a teacher with SBCC for 43 years, I have emphasized the supreme importance of encouraging the expression of a diversity of views. I mention these things only to establish some credibility with a mostly center-left Independent readership as I express my dismay at UCSB’s failure to unequivocally defend the free speech rights of conservative antiabortion activists, rights violated by the actions of Professor Mireille Miller-Young in a March 4 incident in the campus free speech zone.

The facts of the encounter are not in dispute. The activists had been distributing antiabortion literature in the zone for some weeks. When I encountered them in my regular walks through the area, they were civil to the point of being patronizing, like the Jehovah’s Witnesses that show up at our doors. They were displaying signs with graphic photos of aborted fetuses, but graphic displays, designed to draw our attention to a particular cause, are commonplace in the zone.

Prof. Miller-Young engaged the group in a heated conversation, then seized and later destroyed one of the signs, allegedly shoving an activist attempting to retrieve it. She has been charged with theft, battery, and vandalism. Her bizarre defense is that as a pregnant woman, she felt her safety imperiled by the activists and that she had a moral imperative to take the action that she did, ironically a rationale similar to that used by antiabortion extremists in defending criminal acts at abortion clinics.

Regardless of how her criminal case is resolved, the professor’s appallingly unprofessional conduct should receive appropriate sanctions from UCSB. Her behavior, however, could be dismissed as an aberration by one instructor. More troubling is the institution’s response to the incident as represented by the lengthy email that Vice Chancellor Michael Young sent to UCSB students on March 19, which ostensibly defends free speech but mostly blames the victims and contains only the most oblique criticism of Ms. Miller-Young’s actions.

The vice chancellor’s letter rightly affirms that: “Freedom and rights are not situational … we cannot pick and choose what views are allowed to be aired.” But that message is muddied if not contradicted by Vice Chancellor Young’s assertion that the campus is under siege by “outside groups” that seek to “create discord” and “peddle hate and intolerance.” In essence, he asserts that outside agitators are trying to stir up trouble. Sound familiar? This argument has been used countless times to discredit liberal groups exercising free speech. In fact it was used in the mid-1960s by UC officials and by Governor Reagan to delegitimize the Free Speech Movement on the Berkeley campus.

The vice chancellor never mentions Prof. Miller-Young by name but does state that outside groups desire to provoke confrontation and that if “we take the bait” and engage in “offensive behavior” then “they win.” The implication is that the professor took the bait but that the ultimate blame for her “offensive behavior” lies with the provocateurs themselves.

Displaying a paternalism more appropriate for advising elementary-school students than young adults, Young suggests that if students want to avoid “pain, embarrassment, fear, hurt,” they should consider avoiding the free speech zone entirely. But a free speech zone is intended to provoke and challenge students, get them out of their comfort zones and expose them to new and sometimes unsettling ideas. Young’s advice can only have a chilling effect on the free exchange of ideas in the zone.

He says that if students feel they are being exposed to hate speech, a term whose ambiguity, as the ACLU has cautioned, creates a slippery slope for abridging free speech, they should call the UCSB Police. Pointedly, he does not also recommend that they should call the police if they observe the free speech rights of activists being violated, as occurred on March 4.

Young’s letter pays lip service to unfettered free speech but signals that some types of speech are more welcome than others. It is difficult for me to believe that if a conservative professor tore up a sign carried by a pro-choice activist with graphic photos of victims of botched abortions from the era when abortion was illegal, the vice chancellor would be describing that activist as an outside agitator who provoked the confrontation and is herself to blame.

The words attributed to Voltaire define the meaning of free speech. (You shouldn’t have to look this one up!) It is easy to defend free speech when the rights of our own side are in jeopardy. We don’t need a First Amendment to protect speech that most people are comfortable with. The true test is what we do when the other side’s rights are compromised. This is a Voltaire moment for UCSB and for the liberal community in Santa Barbara.

Comments

Independent Discussion Guidelines

Hoffman's account of the issue of free speech is that of a true liberal, and that is meant as a compliment. As Sealion rightly points out, Hoffman is a true liberal, not a faux-liberal, and true liberalism has enough confidence in itself that it doesn't need to oppress the ideas and free speech of others.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 2:56 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Kudos Hoffman. It's good for some liberals to realize where they have started and where they are now. The jack-booted riot police of the late 60's and early '70's have been replaced by the jack-booted PC police of today, ready to quash any views they deem objectionable.

Botany (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 4:48 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I love it when those who want to silence Freedom of speech lash-out and attack those who express and then stand on their own personal reasons for their actions. You put your hands on me first? Expect to pull back bloody stumps!

dou4now (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 6:16 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Thank you Mr. Hoffman!

drifter77 (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 7:51 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I also walk regularly through the Arbor Mall, and the signs that these particular protestors showed:

http://static.squarespace.com/static/...

are by *no means* commonplace in the Arbor Mall, which is home also to lots of lunch food places.

UC Campuses are highly regulated spaces. The purpose of the UC Campuses is education, research, and service, not what any random person thinks is appropriate.

That is why President Sproul was able to enforce is Rule 17 that kept speech he didn't approve off campus until President Kerr (and the regents) reversed that. And indeed, Governor Reagan fired Kerr for that. Also, a lot of nasty FBI surveillance and disruption was initiated by Reagan that destroyed a lot of lives, including Mario Savio's.

But in any case, the regulations loosened by Kerr apply only to *speech* and were never loosened for big posters and signs. Prior approval is needed for posters and signs of the size that the recent protestors displayed, and they did not seek nor get approval under Regents' Policy 100014.

http://policy.ucop.edu/doc/3000127/No...

I don't in any way defend or condone Miller-Young's action in removing the signs, or in pushing the anti-abortion demonstrators.

Also, the anti-abortion protestors are free to make their case verbally and with literature on the Arbor Mall.

I was approached by them and did not find them polite. Pushy and stressed is a better portrayal. But they were easily within the envelope of acceptable behavior.

Those signs, however, have no place next to the place where I buy lunch. The protestors would never have got them approved, had they gone through the well-established procedure. They evaded the proper regulations that govern the UCSB campus.

pardallchewinggumspot (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 9:02 a.m. (Suggest removal)

No more Stalins, no more Hitlers.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 9:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

What Voltaire really wrote was ``Monsieur l'abbé, I detest what you write, but I would give my life to make it possible for you to continue to write.''

The better-known Quotation, on the other hand, was only a characterization of Voltaire's attitude about French royalty's burning a book by Helvétius, a protege of Voltaire, whose book had greatly displeased Voltaire by comparing him with lesser savants:

"Voltaire forgave him all injuries, intentional or unintentional. `What a fuss about an omelette!' he had exclaimed when he heard of the burning. How abominably unjust to persecute a man for such an airy trifle as that! `I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,' was his attitude now." (The Friends of Voltaire, by Beatrice Hall, 1906.)

http://www.classroomtools.com/voltair...

Having read a bit of Voltaire, I had trouble visualizing him with glove rampant. Was he a dueler? Rhetoric in a letter to an abbé is not quite the même chose as a public challenge to all comers, but who knows...?

Anyway, Diogenes supposedly said that the most beautiful thing in the world was freedom of speech. But deceased gurus have been creatively epitomized by their disciples from time in a memorial... except for Mohammed, may fatwahs languish, a-ozu billahi mena shaitaan Arrajeem.

Otherwise, regarding Hofman's letter, I concur with most commenters!

atomic_state (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 12:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Both of the Voltaire quotes are spurious actually, but one appreciates the spirit of their intent. This is fine letter by the author. I certainly endorse his well-reasoned points.

zappa (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 1:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Hoffman nailed it. Spot on.
Thank you!

realitycheck88 (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 2 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"The jack-booted riot police of the late 60's and early '70's have been replaced by the jack-booted PC police of today, " = false equivalence.

spacey (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 2:15 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@pardallchewinggumspot,

It would make more sense to move the free speech area than to restrict speech deemed unappetizing.

dewdly (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 2:34 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@dewdly Just in front of the tunnel, on County administered property on, ahem, Pardall, is a fine place, regularly used by protestors who take the trouble to learn the UCSB regulations.

UCSB's regulations on signs and posters are enforced regardless of the content, and thus do not violate free speech guarantees.

pardallchewinggumspot (anonymous profile)
March 28, 2014 at 3:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sealion, you do realize that, apart from the Independent, SB is dominated by far right media, right?

ahem (anonymous profile)
March 29, 2014 at 9:07 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Right on, Mr. Hoffman. Suppression of free speech by the Left goes back to the 60's when the "radicals" would never allow civil discourse but would shout down any who dared disagree with their views.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 9:29 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Thank you Professor Hofmann for establishing that someone in Santa Barbara knows the difference between right and wrong. If the top high school graduates in California are unable to formulate cogent, civil arguments to counteract zealots with opposing viewpoints, then UCSB is failing us, the taxpayers. All speech, even the most odious, must be protected or we all lose the protections of the first amendment. I await Chancellor Yang to issue a strong statement in support of truly free speech. I await the outcome of the faculty hearing for Professor Miller-Young. I await the verdict of a jury in this matter.

freespeechisnotfree (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 1:02 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sealion, please cool the rhetoric. Stop the ad hominem attacks. Formulate lucid, literate comments about the issues. Only then can we assess the validity of your viewpoints.

freespeechisnotfree (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 2:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thank you, freespeechisnotfree.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 4:19 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sealion: Your post at 1:27 PM using the words "fat, ugly, angry, old" fits my definition of ad hominem. Such descriptors do not advance the discussion about the behavior of Professor Miller-Young and her impressionable students.

freespeechisnotfree (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 6:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thanks for the enlightening response Sealion. I agree with your formulation and admit I am not up to date with the current literature in the field of porn (images might be another story). I will sign out with good wishes to all in Santa Barbara.

freespeechisnotfree (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 8:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I feel like the author nailed it.

-Not relevant to the argument but-
@Sealion: "I won't be cooling the rhetoric given how cool the totalitarian ice already is at UCSB and in most of SB's indoctrinated institutions."

I enjoyed that. Well written.

redspool (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 8:54 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thank you Fred Hofmann for doing an excellent job at articulating what many of us "middle of the road liberals" have been attempting to say all a long.

I also commend you for having the courage to say this, as I know for fact that many people at UCSB: students, staff as well as even many tenured academics, either refuse to speak up, out of fear or cowardice OR, like Michael Young are convinced that their beliefs are correct and beyond question or even discussion.

I know for a fact that some people have been targeted, and as a result have lost their jobs for daring to question some of the feminist dogma
exposed on campus.

In so many ways the very campuses that espouse freedom of ideas and tolerance, have become "islands of intolerance amongst a sea of free thinking"

George Orwell had it right:

Not merely the validity of experience but the very
existence of external reality was tacitly denied by
their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common
sense. George Orwell – 1984 On the Thought Police.

yendopostal (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 9:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thanks to Prof. Fred Hofmann for his succinct defense of free speech at UCSB and his cogent criticism of Vice-Chancellor Young's seeming agreement, but which turned out to be really nothing but lip service to it as Young proceeded to slimily attack the protestors. I find it interesting (by which I mean ominous) that there seem to be no UCSB faculty weighing in for the First Amendment. Is it fear of their university's administrators, or worse perhaps, agreement with Chancellor Young?Mirielle Miller-Young is of course an odious example of the sorry state of the American university. That she is not figuratively perp walked by her fellow professors is nothing short of appalling.

JohnFord (anonymous profile)
March 30, 2014 at 11:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"fat, ugly, angry, old, "

What a terrible way to describe them!

Instead say "full figured, cosmetically challenged, annoyed, and mature".

dolphinpod14 (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 12:23 a.m. (Suggest removal)

There is strong support for free *speech*. In fact the Arbor Mall (and some other spots on campus) are free speech zones. At least at UC, these zones are the direct descendants of the zone on Sproul Plaza where Mario Savio stood on the police car holding Jack Weinberg.

Also, literature can be handed out.

The contentious issue is the *display of gruesome images* like these:

http://static.squarespace.com/static/...

Not speech, per se. Nor even expression.

Large posters are actually strictly regulated on UC Campuses. UC Campuses are not formally public spaces like streets, sidewalks, or parks. They are spaces with a purpose defined in the California Constitution. It appears that the anti-abortion protestors did not follow the Regents regulations before posting this signs. The regulations require prior written approval before posting.

Fred Hoffman or others might think a free-for-all of all sorts of unlimited expression and behavior is appropriate for the UCSB Arbor Mall, but in fact, UC Campuses have very narrow ranges of allowed behavior.

Miller-Young was enforcing the Regents' regulation by seizing the sign. She did so in an unacceptable manner, however. She should not have seized the sign, she should have called for the UCSB police to cite the demonstrators.

pardallchewinggumspot (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 10:04 a.m. (Suggest removal)

What a laugh, I'm sure it was the size of the sign that was the issue and not the content.

Botany (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 10:12 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If I as an Artist are culturally and regulatorlly required to warn people of explicit imagery, then other people should have to abide by the same rules and cultural mores.

Despite those safeguards I've had people attempt to censor my work in a gallery setting, tho not as aggressively and destructively as this case.

SAH dropped the ball by not playing by the rules.

Both sides were in error, there are no angels here.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 10:21 a.m. (Suggest removal)

What does Fred Hoffman know about being pregnant and having grotesque photos and dolls of unborn feti placed in front of his face? Only a geniune chavunist whether liberal or conservative would not phantom the concept of the acts committed by the anti-abortionist as a violation of rights to all women and men alike. If an an anti-pornography coalition picketed or set up booths with photos of real life images of human genitalial they would be arrested. The human body or a fetus can be a beautiful image when presented in a beautiful loving way. The anti-abortionist on campus that day were obscene and offensive.

VioletFlame (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 5:27 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Come on, VioletFlame: if you love your country and if you love the freedoms our constitiution provides you, then you should protect with all you might the right of anti-abortionists to have their say. I disagree with them and you disagree with them. But to silence them would diminish us all, as we succomb to the notion that our truth is the correct truth---we become true believers just like them. We are better; we are stronger. Let them speak.

freespeechisnotfree (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 5:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

VioletFlame = The Nazi PC police that want to silence people up that they don't agree with.

Botany (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 5:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

A few weeks back, as my daughter and I were walking our dogs (on a public street) a man and woman were involved in sexual intercourse in an automoblie parked directily infront of us. We asked them to take their "business" elsewhere. They ignored us and continued on. An elderly woman also walking her dog called the police. Making love or plain old sex can be a beautiful thing....this was not beautiful. It was very disturbing. Freedom of expression is necessary and mandatory but subjecting an individual with grotesque images is a violation not only a visual level but psychological. Some people believe in an indivuals rights to carry arms, I believe in my right to stop people who are violating my rights when they wave photos of dead fetuses in my face. It has nothing to do with how I feel personally about abortion.

VioletFlame (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 8:50 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Violet flame. Those folks in their automobile doing the elevator dance is the reason there are so many unwanted babies. Kind of ironic, isnt it?

dolphinpod14 (anonymous profile)
March 31, 2014 at 9:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

fat, ugly, and old or "full figured, cosmetically challenged, annoyed, and mature". Notice how long the PC terms are, Mr Podman. That'll be it's downfall. -The Sealion-

Yes, but that's why I post it...to show how absurd political correctness is.

dolphinpod14 (anonymous profile)
April 2, 2014 at 3:02 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Or to be politically and scientifically correct, I should refer to you as Eumetopias Jubatus.

dolphinpod14 (anonymous profile)
April 2, 2014 at 3:06 a.m. (Suggest removal)

This is a political correctness issue, not a free speech issue.
How would this have played out if a male chauvinist "good-old boy" who felt threatened and repulsed by a feminist professor grabbed a sign held by one?

The Indy fully supports one-sided politically correct AGW Lysenkoism, supported by a small minority of scientists.

The 35% of Santa Barbara's population (too low- I've looked at census maps and people I know who have physical disabilities aren't on them) who may need assistance to live outside of an institution not only had their entire budget cut by Schneider recently, who referred to this segment of the population as developmentally disabled, but have been denied the freedom of speech to respond to this by the Indy.

Replace the 35% disabled by the 19% or so politically correct non-heterosexual SB residents and write a scenario.

14noscams (anonymous profile)
April 2, 2014 at 10:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

What exactly is "Replace the 35% disabled by the 19% or so politically correct non-heterosexual SB residents and write a scenario." supposed to mean?
Some vast gay conspiracy to disenfranchise and alienate the disabled? Really?

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 3, 2014 at 12:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The Supreme Court is weighing the question of whether a 35-foot limitation on anti-abortion demonstrators outside the entrance of an abortion clinic impermissibly restricts the free speech rights of such activists to approach women who are actually trying to get abortions. Implicit even in the law being challenged is that neither the clinics nor the women seeking abortions have the right to a larger zone of privacy. How is it, then, that at a university that should be a very bastion of free speech and academic liberty that there can be any question about the impropriety of one of its professors seeking out and actively assaulting a person engaging in speech that would be protected in any other setting. If the university cannot see the asymmetry of its approach to this controversy and come down hard on one of its own who violates the core principle that freedom of speech is a content-neutral principle, what is left of that principle they are most charged with teaching and advocating?

RoyFMal (anonymous profile)
April 22, 2014 at 5:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sorry, the Regents of UC `own' the land on UC Campuses. It is not public land, it is land administered by a public corporation for the purpose of teaching, research, and education.

Governor Ronald Reagan and his appointees to the Regents made sure that unfettered free expression was ***NOT ALLOWED*** on UC land. A student who had a small sign that said `F*CK' was sent to jail for displaying that sign, in 1967.

Over time the regulations allowing expression on UC Land have been loosened, but they have *NEVER* been loosened to the point that signs of this size are allowed without prior written approval:

http://static.squarespace.com/static/...

SAH simply violated the rules. As Reagan insisted: Obey the Rules or Get Out.

pardallchewinggumspot (anonymous profile)
April 24, 2014 at 11:33 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If that's the case,then calling that area a free speech zone (as it is now) would be incorrect. We should change the name to a "restricted speech zone" or a "politically correct speech zone".

Botany (anonymous profile)
April 24, 2014 at 12:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

http://dailycaller.com/2014/04/24/ano...

"Two students are suing the University of Hawaii for violating their First Amendment rights after administrator prevented them from distributing copies of the U.S. Constitution — demonstrating a frightening lack of knowledge about the very legal document they were attempting to censor.

Students Merritt Burch and Anthony Vizzone, members of the Young Americans for Liberty chapter at UH-Hilo, were prevented from handing out copies of the Constitution at a recruitment event in January. A week later, they were again informed by a censorship-minded administrator that their First Amendment-protected activities were in violation of school policy.

The students were told that they could only distribute literature from within UH-Hilo’s “free speech zone,” a small, muddy, frequently-flooded area on the edge of campus.

Administrators further clarified their level of respect for students’ free speech rights, making comments like, “This isn’t really the ’60s anymore,” and “people can’t really protest like that anymore,” according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.

The First Amendment has not been modified since the 1960s, however, and robustly protects the rights of students at public universities to hold non-disruptive protests, speak their mind and distribute literature.

Administrators also maintained that university policy took precedent over Constitutional rights, according to the complaint.

“It’s not about your rights in this case, it’s about the University policy that you can’t approach people,” said Ellen Kusano, director of Student Affairs, according to the complaint. "

loonpt (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 11:26 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"The students were told that they could only distribute literature from within UH-Hilo’s “free speech zone,” a small, muddy, frequently-flooded area on the edge of campus."

Was anyone else allowed to distribute anything else outside of this "free speech zone"?

This sounds like one of those stunts where kids will defy a strict (didn't say not stupid) dress code by wearing something with Old Glory on it...."The E-ville gubmint schools hate America!!!"

Walter (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 3:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"University Of Hawaii-Hilo Prevents Students From Handing Out Constitution

0 0

By Jonathan Wolfe, Fri, April 25, 2014
Two students at the University of Hawaii – Hilo are suing their school after they were prevented from distributing copies of the Constitution on campus. The students say the move on their school’s behalf infringed on their First Amendment free speech rights.

The students, Merritt Burch and Anthony Vizzone, were prevented from distributing pamphlets of the Constitution in accordance with the University of Hawaii’s Registered Independent Student Organization (RISO) handbook.

Here’s the pertinent section from the book:

“When using a public venue, RISOs may not approach people to solicit them. Although we support a diverse intellectual and social atmosphere on campus, we also believe that each person should be able to freely choose whether to listen to your solicitation or not.”

According to the Complaint in Burch’s lawsuit, solicitation in this context also refers to distributing literature. So the school’s move blocking Burch and Vizzone from distributing pamphlets has nothing to do with the fact that it is the Constitution being handed out. Distributing any literature would be prohibited, whether it’s the Constitution or a handout summarzing Mein Kampf.

Here’s the less than satisfying response the school gave when asked to explain their policy.

“The University policy [for events] says that RISOs can’t approach people. We run a diverse campus and people can feel intimidated and it’s like they [the students] can’t say no. We have a free speech zone for students to use and it’s between the theater and new student services building…

“This isn’t really the 60’s anymore. People can’t really protest like that anymore, times have really changed since the movement back then...”

Law professor Eugene Volokh criticized the school’s policy in his Washington Post column today, and said the “students can’t say no” theory is weak at best.

“In any event,” he writes, “this is a pretty clearly unconstitutional policy, and I hope the university will promptly withdraw it in the face of the lawsuit.”

- See more at: http://www.opposingviews.com/i/societ...

Like I thought...a lame "rule" to be sure, but it has nothing to do with "banning the Constitution".

Walter (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 3:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Once again, Loon debunked. ;)

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 3:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Yes, once again I have been thoroughly debunked by a silver tongued fascist. I get debunked by them all the time, until you begin to see through the silver tongued fascists' doublespeak and manipulation.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 3:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"“This isn’t really the 60’s anymore. People can’t really protest like that anymore, times have really changed since the movement back then...”

Law professor Eugene Volokh criticized the school’s policy in his Washington Post column today, and said the “students can’t say no” theory is weak at best.

“In any event,” he writes, “this is a pretty clearly unconstitutional policy, and I hope the university will promptly withdraw it in the face of the lawsuit.”"

Listen to your cousin.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 4 p.m. (Suggest removal)

By the way, the guy imprisoned for the F*CK sign at UC Berkeley in 1967 appealed to the US Supreme Court. They refused to hear the case.

Free speech does not mean you can do any thing you want at any time on anyone's property.

If you want public free speech and expression, at UCSB you can get it on Pardall or any other IV street.

Campus is a highly regulated environment. Try going to a physics class and try to take it over to talk about why Newton's Laws are incorrect. You'll find out.

The free speech zone in the Arbor has a fair number of rules… the loudness of the speech is regulated. And big signs like:

http://static.squarespace.com/static/...

are supposed to be pre-approved by the administration.

The reflexive `no free speech at UCSB' reaction is truly mindless and ignorant.

pardallchewinggumspot (anonymous profile)
April 25, 2014 at 5:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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