“serious implications for freedom of speech and conscience on campus”
The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) is sounding the alarm on this policy.
The College Fix reports:
University of Kentucky bias response team features ‘literal thought police’
The University of Kentucky this month received a dubious award from a campus watchdog group for their campus speech code that, in the words of the group, “threatens to seriously chill freedom of speech” and contains “literal speech police” as part of its governing mechanism.
The university’s Bias Incident Response Team “[encourages] students to report on one another, and on their professors, for saying virtually anything that offends anyone else,” the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education reports.
The Bias Incident Response Team, which the university’s website states is the school’s “official system for reporting acts of bias, hatred, and identity-based violence,” defines a “bias incident” as any “activity that intimidates, demeans, mocks, degrades, marginalizes, or threatens individuals or groups,” according to FIRE. These incidents can be “intentional or unintentional.”
“This burgeoning ‘if you hear something, say something’ anti-bias campaign has serious implications for freedom of speech and conscience on campus,” FIRE Vice President for Policy Research Samantha Harris writes.
In addition, Harris reports, Kentucky’s bias team “includes not only staff from offices like the counseling center and diversity office, but also university police and campus conduct administrators.”
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