ASD Misrepresents Trustee on Speech Codes

Alumni for a Strong Dartmouth has repeatedly misrepresented alumni Trustee T.J. Rodgers ’70 and his position on Dartmouth’s speech codes, he writes in the Daily Dartmouth:

While it is true we are making some progress in free speech at Dartmouth, I recently reviewed campaign commentaries from the Dartmouth Asia Pacific Alumni Association, Mary Conway, 1982 class president and Belinda Chiu ’98 of the Alumni Council, all of which completely misrepresent my position on free speech. I did not say, nor have I ever said, that Dartmouth does not have a speech code, or that “the College protects free speech,” as they said, with identical wording.

Rodgers goes on to say that Dartmouth maintains one of the worst speech codes in the country:

Although they are not labeled as such, these statements do legally constitute a speech code that violates the First Amendment. Furthermore, speech codes that are content-specific are unambiguously illegal. The Dartmouth speech code is even more egregious in that it does not clearly specify what constitutes punishable behavior, beyond generalities such as a lack of “respect,” “consideration” or “inclusivity” — or specify what penalties will be inflicted for speech code violations.

Alumni for a Strong Dartmouth and its supporters in the College leadership, though, maintain that Rodgers “is convinced that the College protects free speech.”