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The Sentinel

An Eye on the Penn State Administration


‘We Value Free Speech’

Sure you do, Old Main. The Daily Collegian reported on October 19 about a new law called The College Campus Press Act set to pass in Illinois that will protect free speech in the context of student media. While I applaud this move by the Illinois legislature, I can’t help but wonder if such a thing would ever pass in Pennsylvania. We can’t even let the sunshine in.

Does Penn State’s beauracracy really value and respect students’ first amendment right to free speech and expression? The answer is clearly and resoundingly a “no”. You don’t even have to delve very far into the archives of PSU history to find examples of the administration’s propensity for silencing students’ voices when it’s politically convenient or otherwise expedient.

State Sen. Jake Corman, R-Centre, said if an occasion arose where censorship of campus media occurred within Pennsylvania, there would be a need for a similar bill to Illinois’ to remedy the problem. “Clearly, censorship is not something I would be supportive of,” he said.

Annemarie Mountz, Penn State spokeswoman, said censorship does not occur within the university. “We value the First Amendment here,” she said.

Gavin Keirans, executive director of Safeguard Old State and a DJ at WKPS-FM (90.7), was encouraged by the passing of the Illinois law. “I definitely think [the act] is a positive step forward in legitimizing college media,” he said.

Has Senator Corman heard of a guy by the name of Joshua Stulman, the kid tangled up in the case of the censored artwork of in the spring of 2006? National Review even covered the censorship controversy, and student A.J. Fluehr even went so far as to sue Penn State for their anti-student attitude, specifically in policy AD-42.

I’m really dissapointed that The Daily Collegian didn’t do its homework on this story, and essentially gave PSU spokeswoman and spinmaster Annemarie Mountz the opportunity to spew untruth without accountability or question. Jake Corman, for his part, should also know better.

Penn State administrators aren’t serious about free speech. They’re serious about creating the illusion of freedom and an environment wherein students are so disenfranchised from matters of University governance and so far removed from the real decisions that affect us that we don’t even know what freedom means.

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Comments

“Penn State administrators aren’t serious about free speech. They’re serious about creating the illusion of freedom and an environment wherein students are so disenfranchised from matters of University governance and so far removed from the real decisions that affect us that we don’t even know what freedom means.”

Bingo. Why would any college administrator want students to be free? That means that they might *gasp* stand up for themselves against unjust policies such as AD-62 and speaking out against the vast frivolity and unchecked spending occurring left and right here at a supposed university.

By keeping the students dumbed down and clueless and apathetic, they make their job easier. A University is optimally to be a palce where students come to question what they know, to expand their horizons and come of age. However, many administrators have realized their jobs of running the sinking ship is much easier if you walk around spewing buzzwords like diversity and multiculturalism that look good on paper, but fall to pieces when examined critically. Better not say that! Thats not politically correct! That does not foster diversity! These are the ways that free speech and TRUE diversity are destroyed and suppressed while pandering for more of the almighty dollar.

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