Friday, October 19, 2007

Censorship of Obama Students at Claflin

I have two blogs: one on college freedom (related to my forthcoming book this December on Patriotic Correctness), and a second at about my new book on Barack Obama. This issue is the first one I've ever seen that leads me to crosspost.

This story on FITSNews, a South Carolina political blog, reports on how Claflin University, a historically black college in South Carolina, apparently is prohibiting students from forming a Students for Barack Obama group.

To make matters worse, last week Hillary Clinton supporter State Sen. John Matthews had a press conference at Claflin to announce Hillary's policy on higher education.

Students (seen in this photo) had their class cancelled for the event and then were told to stand behind Matthews amid "Hillary for president" signs in order to appear to give support for Hillary Clinton. The students reported feeling "coerced by administrators" to do it.

Cancelling a class to attend a press conference is very dubious to begin with, no matter what the subject. But compelling students to give support for a particular political candidate is a violation of their rights, as is trying to stop students from supporting an opposing candidate.

Claflin University officials won't respond to me, or FITSnews, about the issue.

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