You expect California to be nauseatingly liberal. You know full well that most college campuses are as well. What you might not expect is a university to crack down on a student for handing out copies of the Constitution. Unfortunately for freedom, that is exactly what happened.
On September 17th, otherwise known as Constitution Day, campus police at Modesto Junior College told Robert Van Tuinen that he is only allowed to hand out the Constitution at a tiny designated spot on campus and has to schedule the ordeal several days in advance.
Remember Romney’s “Binders Full of Women” that caught him so much flak in the election? After he was escorted to the administration office by campus police, a woman showed Van Tuinen a binder that restricts his freedom of speech and explained that “free expression is allowed” “in front of the student center, in that little cement area.” Unfortunately for Van Tuinen, two people were already using it.
Robert Shibley, senior vice president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education told Fox News, “Watching the video is a combination of depressing and nauseating, to see what rigamarole students have to go through just to express themselves on campus.”
The problem is, I don’t completely agree with Mr. Shibley. For me, college is a place where tons of people express themselves, usually far over the top and in the absolute most ridiculous ways possible. I have been handed offensive flyers with shocking titles and images, walked past people throughout campus loudly proclaiming outrageous worldviews, and have been continuously bombarded by a viewpoint nowhere near my own or even what passes as the “left” these days.
Do I agree with any of this? Of course not. Do I understand why people can do this and why it is important that they have the right to? You bet your ass.
Robert Van Tuinen was handing out the Constitution, a document not only widely available to everyone but the foundation of the very country these universities operate in. It specifically outlines the ability for “alternatives” nationwide to proclaim their views to the masses and allows universities to be the liberal dogmatic institutions that they currently operate as. How ironic then that the Constitution itself would be disallowed from distribution.
“In the case of the YouTube video, it does not appear that the student was disrupting the orderly operations of the college and therefore we are looking into the incident,” Modesto Junior College Marketing and Public Relations officer Linda Hoile said.
Perhaps too it is worth looking into the selective restrictions on freedom of speech.
Here’s the video:
[via Fox News]