Roe Reintroduces Resolution Promoting Free Speech on College Campuses
WASHINGTON D.C. -Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-Tenn.) reintroduced a resolution that reinforces First Amendment rights for all Americans on college campuses. This resolution expresses the sense of Congress that institutions of higher education should facilitate and recommit themselves to protecting and promoting the free and open exchange of ideas, and that free speech zones and codes are inherently at odds with the First Amendment. Roe released the following statement:
“In my lifetime, I have seen countless examples of Americans disagreeing on issues, but coming together to debate them in an attempt to find common ground. That spirit of free and open debate is just as important now as it has ever been. President Trump is making free speech a top priority, and Congress must as well,” said Roe. “Colleges and universities were once the hotbeds of free speech and debate, and as a Vietnam-era veteran I saw this first hand even though I sometimes disagreed with that speech wholeheartedly. Our Constitution guarantees the right to free speech and to passionately expression of their views. Surprisingly, in the 21st century we have seen colleges and universities attempt to drown out free speech by using ‘free-speech’ zones and restrictive speech codes. Protecting the rights granted by the Constitution is of utmost importance to me, and I hope this resolution will prompt institutions of higher-education to foster and protect free speech on their campuses.
“Students across the political spectrum have had their expressive activity quarantined into misleadingly labeled ‘free speech’ zones,” said Joe Cohn, Legislative and Policy Director of FIRE. “Hopefully, Congress's continued focus on campus censorship will help put an end to this unlawful practice.”
Note: Congressman Roe introduced identical legislation in the 115th Congress, view the full text here.