Liberals are experts at taking very bad ideas and making them look very good. The issue of free speech on college campuses is an excellent example. After all, conservatives and liberals would generally agree that we do not like to see real hateful speech on college campuses. However, the liberal ideology uses that sentiment to muzzle free speech while the conservative realizes that curtailing First Amendment protections is not a real solution. The only true response to speech that we disagree with is to meet it with other speech of a differing viewpoint.
Unfortunately, Michigan State University chose to take the liberal route to deal with the problem of disagreeable speech. Putting whiteboards on dorm room doors has been an institution on college campuses for years. They are used as a means of free expression. Students post their favorite quotes, ask questions for people to write responses to, and generally serve as a way to unify dorm residents. However, complaints of racial slurs have led Michigan State University to ban all whiteboards on dorm room doors starting this fall.
It may seem like a small step, but this reflects the liberal mindset on campuses. Rather than err on the side of Constitutionally-protected speech, they err on the side of not hurting people’s feelings. Sometimes these cases can get even more extreme. Skidmore College labeled it a hate crime when students put the popular campaign slogan “Make America Great Again” on campus whiteboards. Skidmore’s “Bias Response Group” claimed that their group “does not interpret these messages as political speech but as racialized, targeted attacks.”
Although no one likes legitimately hateful language, taking away the right to free speech on college campuses is a slippery slope. What may seem like a good idea can easily turn into an unconstitutional nightmare for the rights of college students. Do not be fooled by liberals who claim that taking away tools for expression like whiteboards is going to solve any problems. The only way to conquer false ideologies is to use the tool of free speech to overcome misinformation with the truth.