Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas got a taste of censorship this past week.
Students at this public school had erected a “Free Speech” wall on campus, a stand alone object covered in paper designed for students to come by and write essentially anything they want on it.
Statements on the wall ranged from the inane to the obscene. In fact, the F-bomb seemed to be the most prevalent word on the board.
But within hours of the wall going up, a professor tore part of it down after what he deemed was “offensive content.” The part of the wall he called offensive was a statement that read, “Fuck Obama.” Though there were other groups and people attacked on the wall, it was only this comment he found offensive and the only part of the wall the professor asked them to take down.
Eventually the students had to take the wall down after the police said they were engaging in “disorderly conduct.” You can see pictures of the wall here.
While I don’t agree that we should use this kind of language against our nation’s president, I also don’t think that any professor or police officer should have the ability to limit freedom of speech. It is bad enough that free speech is limited to a temporary wall, but requiring all students to meekly follow authority and not allow them to express themselves is wrong.
To read more about the incident and about the ongoing backlash at SHSU click here.