Jihad, free speech and lesbians
Ok, I found this story to be very interesting: When part-time college student Jihad Daniel received a campuswide e-mail invitation to see a movie about lesbians, he balked. I love his name. But that's just the begining of this crazy story. "These are perversions," he replied to the e-mail's sender, asking that he no longer be sent information about "Connie and Sally" or "Adam and Steve." LOL. The next thing he knew, the 68-year-old student at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., was accused of violating the state school's anti-discrimination policy. Uh-oh. A letter of reprimand followed in June, describing his brief comments to the sender — the head of the women's studies program — as "derogatory or demeaning." He took his case to a Philadelphia organization that has become the go-to group for college students and professors of all stripes who believe their rights to free speech have been violated. Now, this is where it gets interesting. You would think that the "Free speech" group would take the official liberal stand and not help Jihad, since, you know, the people who are after him are gays and lesbians and he called homosexual movies "perversions". But no, you would be mistaken. They championed his case. Apparently that specific civil rights group had no other agenda, but the protection of free speech- not just speech they approve of. Cough ACLU cough. Since 1999, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education has battled pro bono for evangelicals and atheists, animal rights activists and campus conservatives, and others who say they have been silenced by school administrations because of their points of view. The group filed a complaint with the university saying Daniel's rights to free speech and due process had been violated. The New Jersey attorney general sided with the school, but the foundation said it will fight to have the reprimand lifted. With 11 employees in Philadelphia and a network of dozens of volunteer attorneys nationwide, the foundation has grown from an organization that publicized student complaints to a resource for college communities. Foundation president David French said the group's goal is to "transform the culture of education into one that respects free speech for everybody." Go David & Jihad!