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Friday - June 23, 2017 9:04 am

You can't protect free speech by limiting it

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It is good that Wisconsin lawmakers are concerned about free speech. But it makes no sense to protect free speech by limiting free speech. But that is exactly what the Wisconsin Assembly has done in approving legislation that threatens those who dare speak their mind on college campuses. The bill threatens to expel students who disrupt speeches by speakers on campus. Supporter point to a case at UW-Madison by a conservative speaker who was shouted down for a few minutes. But that speaker was ultimately allowed to finish his speech in its entirety. No students were punished by the university. But these lawmakers think they know better than university administrators when a student should be punished, and how severely. The punishment of suspension or expulsion for those who use words is more severe than that of students who commit real crimes, like stalking or rape. This bill is so vaguely worded, that students could be kicked out if even just two people complain...and they don't even have to be students. Some lawmakers wanted to go farther, suggesting that anyone who organizes a protest on a college campus, even peaceful protests. That smacks of Big Brother. You can't protect free speech by limiting free speech. Someone should hold a protest about that.

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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