Auburn Limits Student Free Speech

Brian Underwood
Jan 17, 2012 at 3:31 PM

Jordan-Hare Stadium

I'm a Georgia Bulldog through and through, so that naturally places me at odd with Auburn fans (including my parents) at the height of football season. Though I cheer for the "Dawgs" when they're on the field, I stand with the Tigers when they fight their administration to regain the free speech rights which are justly there.

In this editorial, an Auburn alum and PhD student speaks out against his school's coercive speech codes, which ban the display of anything in dorm room windows, and demonstrates how they are inherently unconstitutional:

What made this incident so egregious is that the university permitted other students to display their bumper stickers, flags, and signs in dorm room windows. This double-standard suggests that Auburn, a public university, was more interested in suppressing ideas associated with a popular political candidate than it was in the safety and welfare of the student body.

Auburn’s policy is to ban the hanging or displaying of items that obstruct residence hall windows. This policy represents an alarming restraint on student speech. Total bans on expression are, among other things, too often subject to abuse of discretion and arbitrary prosecution. The Auburn incident is a case in point.

 Read the full editorial here.

Shocking that this kind of thing can happen in 2012.

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