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Saturday, December 16, 2017

Columbia Professor Urges Universities to Rethink Commitment to First Amendment

A Columbia University comparative literature professor's recent urging of universities to rethink their commitment to the First Amendment in light of "new technologies," such as video cameras, has prompted criticism from across the political spectrum.

Judith Butler argued that "in a world of changing technology where incitement and harassment take on new forms," so-called "free speech absolutists" must understand that the First Amendment can "clash with other basic values," according to a blog post based on her remarks delivered at a panel on free expression at the University of California-Berkeley earlier this month.

The gender theorist and passionate supporter of the academic boycott of Israel cited the trolling methods of fringe right-wing speaker Milo Yiannopolous, who has publicly mocked LGBTQ individuals during his campus appearances, as evidence for the need for widespread reform.

"Maybe we shrug our shoulders and say that this is expressive activity, but surely it crosses the line between expressive activity and threat; and that line was crossed in a new way—and is crossed all the time now in new ways—because of the way technology is now used to incite people to engage in cyber-bullying that did not exist before," wrote Butler.



Anonymous said...

The only thing keeping them from enslaving the population is the US Constitution and they are trying to dismantle that.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great guy. Glad I did not live a life like him. I'm still alive by many more years.