Friday, May 11, 2007

Newspaper "Harassment" at Tufts

A Tufts panel has apparently concluded, bizarrely, that a conservative newspaper was guilty of harassment for publishing a racially offensive parody. Unfortunately, this is a common misunderstanding of what harassment is. Something that offends you is not harassment. And it is essentially impossible for anyone to be legally "harassed" by a newspaper because there is no compulsion to read it.

Fortunately, it appears that Tufts is not treating this case as an actual incident of harassment. There doesn't appear to be any punishment yet, beyond a reprimand and a requirement (which obviously shouldn't be made) banning anonymous articles. And the committee recommended that the newspaper's funding should be cut, although we can hope this idea is ignored. What's dangerous is the chilling precedent set by this misunderstanding of harassment, and the threat that individuals may be punished in the future for writing offensive articles that have their names on them.

See FIRE's coverage of the case.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't remember the priest telling me when I went to Confession when I was a kid, "Well, Lance, it was wrong of you to disobey your mom and talk back to her like that, but since you set the table every night and do your homework and sent your aunt a birthday card, what the heck! You're a good kid. Your sins are forgiven automatically. No need for you to do any penance." 糖尿病 文秘 心脑血管 糖尿病 高血压 高血脂 冠心病 心律失常 心肌病 中风 偏瘫 心力衰竭 神经衰弱 脑出血 心肌梗死 心脏瓣膜病 先天性心脏病 动脉硬化 风湿性心脏病 脑瘫 癫痫 老年性痴呆 低血压 心内膜炎 雷诺综合征 脑血栓 血栓性脉管炎 周围血管异常 肺心病 心绞痛 脑梗塞 低血糖 And maybe it's happened a few times and I haven't heard about it but I can't recall a judge ever letting somebody walk on the grounds the crook was a good guy and his friends really like him.