The Campus Free Speech Problem Worsens and Washington Finally Acts

The turnabout in federal policy towards higher education has been dramatic. Back on September 7, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced that her department was rescinding the 2011 “Dear Colleague” letter in which the Obama administration’s Office for Civil Rights imposed new standards for the way colleges must deal with allegations of sexual assault and … Continue reading “The Campus Free Speech Problem Worsens and Washington Finally Acts”


The Chinese Don’t Like Academic Freedom, So American Schools Should Avoid Their Confucius Institutes

Academic freedom has long been a guiding principle for American colleges and universities: Neither faculty nor students should be told what to say or punished for saying whatever they think. That principle has been under attack in recent years as militants try to drive out those who dissent from their beliefs, but for the most … Continue reading “The Chinese Don’t Like Academic Freedom, So American Schools Should Avoid Their Confucius Institutes”


Secretary DeVos Begins to Rectify the Title IX Mistake

It is very rare for a federal agency to admit having made a mistake and rarer still for the secretary of a cabinet department to announce a U-turn in policy in a heavily publicized speech. But that is exactly what Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos did on September 7. Speaking at George Mason University, Secretary … Continue reading “Secretary DeVos Begins to Rectify the Title IX Mistake”


What’s the Alternative to a Mountain of College Debt?

Meet Sarah, a very bright student in her junior year in high school. She excels in math and science and thinks that an engineering career of some kind would be her cup of tea. She wants to go to a college or university where a strong academic program will give her the knowledge she needs. … Continue reading “What’s the Alternative to a Mountain of College Debt?”


No, Professor, Words Are Not Violence

The excuse we have often heard for raucous campus protests over the last few years is that they are justified as a way of countering the “violence” of speakers like Milo Yiannopoulos and Charles Murray. To prevent them from speaking is, according to this line of argument, using mere sound to eliminate the actual harm … Continue reading “No, Professor, Words Are Not Violence”


Student Free Speech Suffers a Defeat

Since launching its Stand Up for Free Speech project in 2014, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has had a great deal of success in defeating college officials when they interfere with the free speech of students. But you can’t win them all, and a recent decision went against FIRE and the students … Continue reading “Student Free Speech Suffers a Defeat”


books on fire

Professors Should Write Books That Seek Truth, Not Inflame Passions

The academic enterprise is supposed to be about truth. Those who are entrusted to teach are expected to convey knowledge to their students, not their opinions. And when academics write books, they should do so to deepen knowledge in their fields, never to mislead readers. Sometimes, however, academics allow their zeal to convert students or … Continue reading “Professors Should Write Books That Seek Truth, Not Inflame Passions”


punished by tenure

Meet the Professor Who Has Been Punished for Denouncing Tenure

For most professors, the quest for tenure is an all-consuming obsession. It confers security against job loss and cements your position at the college or university. With tenure, you’ve “made it” in the academic world. Tenure, however, does have its critics in the professorial ranks. Among them is University of Chicago economics professor Steven Levitt … Continue reading “Meet the Professor Who Has Been Punished for Denouncing Tenure”


Duke Assails Free Speech So It Can “Protect and Value Diverse Perspectives”

American college campuses are becoming more and more like the old communist states where people enjoyed freedom of speech—but only so long as they didn’t question some aspect of the official orthodoxy. Any such “deviationism” was apt to land them in severe trouble with the authorities, who encouraged loyal citizens to report it. (Alexander Solzhenitsyn … Continue reading “Duke Assails Free Speech So It Can “Protect and Value Diverse Perspectives””


Can the Feds Do Something to Protect Campus Free Speech? Should They?

That free speech on college campuses is under attack cannot be denied. We find invited speakers being disinvited or shouted down, “bias incident” reporting systems that encourage students to complain when they hear anything they don’t like, and professors who demean students who dare to question their assertions. In the fairly recent past, most higher … Continue reading “Can the Feds Do Something to Protect Campus Free Speech? Should They?”