Survey: student attitudes about diversity and inclusion vs. free speech are shifting


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/03/14/survey-student-attitudes-abou.html


#2

Survival instincts are whats happening, you simply don’t waste your time on a person[s] that will never accept alternate models of thought / conclusions / outcomes. Kids just are that smart nowadays.


#3

WTLF? What does social media have to do with free speech? How are private platforms which give you a place to type your opinion in any way related to your protections from government intrusion on your speech? Why do people think a private company owes them anything or could in any way be stifling free speech by refusing to let some people use their property to speak?
This to me points to a pretty big hole in our education system if people whom collages deem educated enough to become students are so poorly informed on the most basic of civic principles.


#4

So this is interesting:
92% of people surveyed said that political liberals are able to freely express their views on college campuses, compared to only 69% of people who felt that political conservatives were able to freely express their views.

But at the same time, 71% of republicans felt that the right to freedom of speech was secure, versus only 59% of democrats.

I wonder why it works out that way? Even among the republicans being surveyed, the general consensus was that liberals are more free to express their views than conservatives, but at the same time there’s a stronger belief among republicans that free speech rights are secure…


#5

I agree with you that mistaking a privately-owned forum like Facebook as a public space leads to this conflation of ‘communications access’ with ‘free speech’.

Another way of reading that excerpt is that the authors meant to convey that the mechanics of social media stifle dialog and the exchange of ideas (in which case, they would have a point). If that was their intent however, trying to use ‘free speech’ as a tidy synonym just reinforces the conflation mentioned above.


#6

Social Media? The filthy hole where all thoughts & ideas, regardless of its origin go to die.


#7

That’s not my point at all. It does not matter if the forum is in a public or a private space. Your freedom of speech is not violated by people preventing you from speaking. Only the state can violate your right to speak.
The conflation happens when people confuse our right not to have our speech punished by the government with the imaginary right to stand on a soap box they don’t own.


#8

I feel like there’s a false dichotomy here. It doesn’t have to be either free speech or inclusion.


#9

But talking to people in person is so passé, so that if you cannot express your views on social media, they simply don’t exist…

(tongue in cheek, but not as much as I would like)


#10

Wow, those gifs are horrible. It’s like they beg for me not to read the article.

They spottily tell us how the numbers have been changing over time — well a difference from 2 years ago anyway – but what’s the expected range of variability? Two data points don’t tell you very much about that.


#11

How about an employer who will fire you when you say something they happen to politically disagree with?

It doesn’t have to be but in practice, inclusion is increasingly used as the justification to censor the “wrong” ideas. If you criticize e.g. affirmative action, for whatever reason, you are deemed to be acting against the inclusion of students of who may have benefited from it.


#12

What argument is there that arguing against AA is acting for the inclusion of students who may have benefited from it?


#13

Not a violation of your 1st amendment (free speech) protections and according to the nonprofit Workplace Fairness: “Political activity retaliation is not covered by the federal laws that generally prohibit retaliation based on race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, and disability for private employers, or by the laws protecting against retaliation on the basis of union or concerted activity.” so it’s not even a violation of employment protections


#14

What argument is there that AA is always so obviously correct and beneficial, both in theory and its practical application, that it can never be criticized?

“We say we are doing it for the good of humanity and therefore all our actions are beyond examination.”


#15

I dunno, since i never hear such absolutist arguments.

You’ve set up a straw man, hope you’re getting some good exercise flailing away at it.

And I’m not at all surprised that you refused to answer my question.


#16

Yeah, which is wrong and stupid. Now this is a definitional argument and therefore fundamentally meaningless. If you define ‘free speech’ as ‘any situation when the government doesn’t directly punish you for it’ then… yeah, fine. But that of itself doesn’t materially assure your ability to freely express your ideas.


#17

What would lead you to believe you have some right to express your ideas in any place other than one you control or own? Why would anyone suppose their ideas are something they should be allowed to spread to others?


#18

Criticism of AA is outright banned as a microaggression e.g. at the University of California and viewed as an actionable offense. I’m pretty sure the argument for this measure boils down to what I wrote.

To your question: Criticism of AA will mostly not be actively promoting inclusion (although there are anti-AA arguments in this vein as well). Why should it? Inclusion isn’t a value that supersedes all other considerations.


#19

The US first amendment is not the universal definition of free speech. It is only a law designed to protect free speech against interference by the government of the United States of America.

Spreading your ideas to others is at the very heart of freedom of speech.
I believe that in a democratic society, everyone should have a chance to express their ideas. But it also happens in democratic societies that the means to express ideas are not equally distributed between people.
So sure, the question of under what circumstances the state should or should not be allowed to interfere with free speech is an important question. But to find out how much free speech people actually have, you have to take into account all the factors that keep them from spreading their ideas to others, and being denied by owners of private platform that other people use to spread their ideas, being kicked out of a private university or being threatened with the loss of a private sector job actually reduce the freedom of speech that individuals have.

Exaggerated instances of AA can create the impression that the people benefiting from it don’t deserve to be where they are. So fighting that might actually be good for the group in question in the long run. Of course, it takes vigorous fact-based debate to identify those situations, and I’d really prefer to see people who are in favor of including everyone on both sides of it.


#20

Citation please.