Wednesday - October 4, 2017 9:19 am

Stifling free speech is not protecting free speech

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My recollection of college, so many years ago now, was that it was a time and place to learn new things, meet new people, many with different ideologies, and to form opinions that ultimately shape who we are as a person. But students at UWL and other schools in the UW System may be kicked out if they stand up for what they believe in. The UW Board of Regents, at its meeting later this week, will consider a bill that would crack down on free speech. Ironically, the university system considers the idea to be protecting free speech, but it seems to be just the opposite. The resolution would punish, even expel, students on those campuses who try to exercise their own rights to free speech. Any student who twice disrupts free expression on campus would be suspended. If they did so again, they would be expelled. The idea came about after some students on the UW Madison campus shouted down a conservative columnist who was scheduled to speak on campus. But threatening students who stand up for what they believe in is not protecting free speech, it is stifling it. Further, the definitions used to define disruption are quite vague, and could lead to students getting into trouble even if they were to shout “yes” or “no” during a campus rally. This resolution is unnecessary and is an overreaction to what happened in Madison. Making UW students afraid to speak out in no way protects their right to free speech.

Last modified on Wednesday - October 4, 2017 9:21 am
Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.

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