Sunday, March 3, 2019

Funding/Speech Threat Against UC-Berkeley & Higher Ed

From Inside Higher Ed: President Trump vowed Saturday to "soon" issue an executive order that would deny federal research funds to colleges and universities that do not support free speech.

"If they want our dollars and we give them by the billions, they’ve got to allow people to speak," said Trump in a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

He did not describe how the executive order would work, or who would judge whether a college or university was not protecting free speech.

During his speech, President Trump brought on stage and praised Hayden Williams [above], who was punched last week when he was at the University of California, Berkeley, seeking support for the president and conservative causes and criticizing Jussie Smollett, the actor who is facing charges of false reporting to the police in a hate crime he claimed to have experienced.

Of Williams, President Trump said that he should sue Berkeley "and maybe sue the state." To loud applause, Trump said, "He took a hard punch in the face for all of us. We can never allow that to happen." And he added that after Williams sues Berkeley, "he's going to be a very wealthy man." The crowd at the meeting chanted "USA" as Trump made these statements.

Video has widely circulated showing Williams being punched. Trump did not note that Berkeley arrested a man, Zachary Greenberg, for assaulting Williams. Neither Williams nor Greenberg are students at Berkeley. The university had permitted Williams to be on campus expressing his views...

Note that UC's new free speech center can be viewed as a barrier against such threats, should they ever materialize.

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