Demand Free Speech for Syracuse University Students!


University officials at Syracuse University have revised their own free speech policies to meet the demands of progressive student activists who want to punish students who hold a different opinion from them.

The Code of Student Conduct was revised earlier this summer to broaden the Anti-harassment policy at Syracuse to include this expanded definition: "Assistance, participation in, promotion of, or perpetuation of conduct, whether physical, electronic, oral, written, or video, which threatens the mental health, physical health, or safety of anyone."

"We the above signed stand with Speech First and urge Syracuse University to revise its 'Student Code of Conduct,' it's 'STOP Bias' and Residential Bias Prevention policies and finally its 'University Events Policy' to bring them into compliance with the First Amendment."

This language gives the university carte blanche to punish not only bad actors who violate the code, but potentially students who witness the event, talk about it among friends, or - God forbid - share an opinion about it publicly.

The Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Syracuse even sent a letter to the student body about the revised policy, lauding its ability to "make clear when bystanders and accomplices can be held accountable" for bias-motivated conduct violations.

This in in clear contrast with the University's Campus Disruption Policy, which states: "Syracuse University is committed to the principle that freedom of discussion is essential to the search for truth and, consequently, welcomes and encourages the expression of dissent."

Additionally, the school's Anti-Harassment Policy states: "Syracuse University is committed to maintaining an environment that fosters tolerance, sensitivity, understanding and respect while protecting the free speech rights of the members of its community."

Unfortunately, it's become clear that "protecting free speech rights" only applies to students who agree with the university's limited view on tolerance and diversity.

In the last four months...

  • Two conservative students were harassed and sent death threats online by members of the Syracuse community and yet the victims received no acknowledgement or help from the administration. Meanwhile, a black student activist group held a very public protest and sent a list of demands to the administration that immediately resulted in changed policy.
  • A chemistry professor used the term Wuhan flu on his class syllabus and was put on administrative leave as a result. Meanwhile, another professor sent a memo to his students openly acknowledging that he does not tolerate support for President Trump in his classroom - he received NO repercussions.

Join with us in telling Syracuse University that dissent is a part of democracy, and they need to apply their free speech promises to all students equally despite political ideology.

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