This is a must-read story for parents of teenagers. FIRE (the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) has issued its annual report on the state of free speech on America’s college campuses. They examined 471 of America’s top colleges and universities, places that should be bastions of free speech and open debate of ideas, and the results are grim.
FIRE found that “89% of American colleges maintain policies that restrict — or could too easily be applied to restrict — student expression.” Over half a million American students are forced to go to a “free speech zone” to express their thoughts (news flash to college administrators: the entire USA is a “free speech zone!”)
Only 11% of the schools earned FIRE’s “green light” rating for protecting free speech rights of students. Sixty-four percent got the middling “yellow light” rating, while 25% got the worst “red light” rating for their hostility to students’ First Amendment rights.
There are, however, signs of movement in a positive direction. For the first time, more than one million students are attending “green light” colleges, a sign to administrators struggling to attract enrollees that protecting free speech might help. There are now two entire states (Arizona and Mississippi) where all the schools ranked earned a “green light” rating. Best of all, the percentage of schools that still maintain unconstitutional “free speech zones” has been cut in half since 2013, from 16% to 8%, and the 40 schools that still do it are facing increasing legal challenges from students.
If you have kids who’ll soon be going to college, click the link for more details and to find out which schools still value the free exchange of ideas over the PC thought police approach. Together with this ranking of the most conservative colleges…
…you can find a place where your tuition money will go to educating your kids instead of turning them into good little socialists who ruin Thanksgiving by haranguing you over voting for Trump and the carbon footprint from your turkey smoker.