This professor falls back on the incorrect idea that “hate speech” isn’t free speech.

Campus Reform reports:

Prof: ‘Racist hate speech’ causes cigarette smoking

A Northwestern University professor argued Wednesday that “hate speech” should be a form of expression that is subject to legal limitation.

In an op-ed for The Los Angeles Times, sociology professor Laura Beth Nielsen contends that “members of traditionally marginalized groups suffer” when Americans are granted the freedom “to be hateful.”

“Perhaps it’s nonsense to characterize the nature of the harm as nothing more than an emotional scratch,” Nielsen postulates. “That’s a reflection of the deep inequalities in our society, and one that demonstrates a profound misunderstanding of how hate speech affects its targets.”

The professor maintains that free speech is already a limited right, mentioning numerous restrictions on panhandling, protesting veteran’s funerals, advertising, inciting lawless action, and more.

“So soldiers’ families, shoppers, and workers are protected from troubling speech,” she deduces. “People of color, women walking down public streets or just living in their dorm on a college campus are not.”

To support her argument, Nielsen cites “empirical data” suggesting that “frequent verbal harassment can lead to various negative consequences.” According to the professor, the negative consequences of “racist hate speech” include high blood pressure, cigarette smoking, depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.