You know things are getting bad for free speech when you have avowed socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders standing against the insanity unfolding on college campuses and universities all across the country.Sanders recently made a statement denouncing the use of violence on campuses as a means of silencing the First Amendment rights of others.
This isn’t the first time Sanders has spoken out on this topic either.TheBlaze is reporting, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders appeared on “Face the Nation” Sunday to denounce efforts by students at various universities to shut down free speech, and the violence some have resorted to in order to silence others.
Sunday, Sanders voiced his support for free speech to “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson, and encouraged Americans to stand up against violence.
“Look, freedom of speech, the right to dissent, the right to protest, that is what America is about,” Sanders said. “And, politically, every leader in this country, every American has got to stand up against any form of violence. That is unacceptable. And I certainly hope and pray that Representative Scalise has a full recovery from the tragedy that took place.”Dickerson asked Sanders where he comes down on the issue of campus free speech, noting the various recent protests and attempts to silence speakers students do not agree with. Sanders shook his head in disagreement before Dickerson finished asking the question.
“I think people have a right to speak,” Sanders said, “and you have a right, if you are on a college campus, not to attend. You have a right to ask hard questions about the speaker if you disagree with him or her.
“But what — why should we be afraid of somebody coming on a campus or anyplace else and speaking?” Sanders continued. “You have a right to protest. But I don’t quite understand why anybody thinks it is a good idea to deny somebody else the right to express his or her point of view.”The fight for free speech has even caused lawmakers in Wisconsin to pass a law that would discipline students for disrupting campus speakers.
Under a new Republican-backed bill approved Wednesday by the Wisconsin State Assembly, protesting students in the University of Wisconsin system who repeatedly interrupt speakers could be suspended or even expelled, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.After nearly four hours of debate, the proposal passed on a 61-36 vote. No Democrats supported the bill and only one Republican, state Rep. Bob Gannon, voted against it. The legislation is now on its way to the state Senate.
Those who support the bill said it was a needed step to protect free speech on college campuses by ensuring potentially controversial personalities — many of whom are conservative — are able to present their arguments without being shut down.
Republican Rep. Jesse Kremer, the bill’s lead sponsor, told the Washington Post that he introduced the proposal in response to “situations where students’ free speech rights have been taken away.” Ultimately, he said he wants to make college campuses more accepting of people of all political persuasions.
“We don’t want to get to the point of having situations in Wisconsin like Berkeley,” Kremer said. “It’s not meant to hurt anyone. People are still allowed to protest and disagree. It’s that the person in a forum has the right to get their point across without being disrupted.”
You know it’s getting bad when leftists like Sanders recognize it’s bad. Perhaps he’s just the “moderate face” of progressivism, but lets hope his followers get with the program as well.
[Note: This article was written by Michael Cantrell]