FIRE's newest effort: defend college newspapers

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
 | 
Bob Kellogg (OneNewsNow.com)

YAF free speech signA college watchdog that advocates for free speech is advising student newspapers to push back against left-wing demands for censorship.

FIRE, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, regularly calls out attempts to quash free speech and that effort includes advising student reporters and editors to demand the right to do their jobs.

FIRE spokesperson Sarah McLaughlin tells OneNewsNow that students may not realize that a newspaper advisor being punished, for example, is also an attack on them.

“But it is,” she asserts, “and that's something we at FIRE want them to understand."

The watchdog has produced a list of “warning signs” for student journalists to watch out for, such as threats to defund the newspaper, pressure on advisors to take action, and calls for censorship.

McLaughlin says FIRE often hears from editors and writers who are fighting radical students and administrators who oppose negative views about the school.

"Because of an op-ed they published,” she says, “students want them to be defunded, or because of a critical piece that they wrote about administrators they're trying to push charges against them. So it's quite often that student journalists are facing some type of censorship or punishment."

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