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Freedom Of Speech In College Essay

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Over the past several years, college campuses across the country are seeing an increase in student led protests due to issues of racial conflict. Much like the late 1960s, national issues of racial inequality have reached a boiling point and prompted our country’s youth to take action. Many students’ aim, through the action of protests, sit-ins, hunger strikes, and demands to change campus and staff infrastructure, is to create a safe space for all races to feel at home at their university. As is often the case with actions like these, the definition of free speech or the First Amendment is questioned; the First Amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” With a wide variety of peoples involved, many different viewpoints must be analyzed to better understand the issues involving…show more content…
Students at Amherst College submitted their demands to administrators requesting that they rewrite the school’s honor code to include a zero-tolerance policy for any racially insensitive acts. While this may seem like a beneficial policy for keeping people of all races safe from hate speech, it would also greatly limit one’s right to free speech on campus. These types of debates are not limited to one campus. Arguments over hate speech policies can also be heard at Columbia University where student and faculty opinions vary greatly over the zero tolerance policy. University of Maryland students go as far as demanding that hate speech be considered cult activity. Incidents following president Trumps election even caused 47 Boston College faculty members to sign a petition requesting a zero tolerance policy be
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