Syracuse admits it doesn’t protect free speech so it can get out of lawsuit

Apr 11, 2019 by

Expect punishment if you harm ‘mental’ health of ‘any other person’

Syracuse University tells students that it’s committed “to the principle that freedom of discussion is essential to the search for truth.” Its communications school even has the First Amendment emblazoned on the building (below).

When its audience is a local judge, however, the private university hedges.

In a legal response last month to a student’s lawsuit that alleges free speech violations by Syracuse, the university told the court that it does not actually grant students free speech.

If it determines that their speech threatens the “mental” health of “any other person,” Syracuse will punish students “irrespective of free speech implications,” the university told the New York Supreme Court in Onondaga County. (In New York State, supreme courts are trial courts.)

Citing its Student Conduct System Handbook, the university said its policy “expressly limits free expression” and “does not incorporate a right of free speech that is coextensive with the First Amendment.”

MOREJudge rules Syracuse can ignore contract, punish students for free speech

The university’s argument did not surprise Zachary Greenberg, an alum of its law school who helped push through a student government resolution that called on Syracuse to narrow a broad harassment policy.

continued: Syracuse admits it doesn’t protect free speech so it can get out of lawsuit | The College Fix

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