Haverford College earns disgrace as FIRE's 'speech code of the month' ' Why Evolution Is True

Haverford College is a very expensive school in the Pennsylvania town. It is not a good idea. Last year, I wrote about how they gave in to ridiculous student demands. Let's do it again:I wrote about the crisis at ritzy Haverford College on December 5, (tuition $57,000/year, total expenses $76,000/year) after a Philadelphia police shooting that resulted in the death of a black man. As I described in my article, and in an informative Quillette piece by Jonathan Kay, the students went on strike and made a series of demands to College. The most remarkable thing about the Haverford protests is how easily the administration gave in to student demands. These included no punishments for strikers and more money for diversity initiatives. They also demanded that the police be defunded, change the curriculum, institute pass-fail grades, create segregated spaces for ethnic groups, and get rid of the President (he has since resigned). The students discovered that there was a systemic racism at Haverford, something that wasn't apparent before the shooting. Kays article explains how they used this knowledge to get everything they wanted. The reaction of Haverford administrators who mockingly bashed themselves online was stark contrast to that of nearby Swarthmore College, which was equally ritzy. Valerie Smith, the black President of Swarthmore College, basically told the students not to make anonymous demands and to engage in civil discourse instead. The Haverford students won the majority of the time. The Haverford Clerk is an independent student newspaper. Click on the screenshot to see the article. It contains links to a list with students' demands and their item-by-item responses.For more information, please visit here The school was previously rated yellow by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, based on its Honor Code speech-chilling Honor Code. This means that there were restrictions on freedom of speech. Although Haverford is a private school and does not have to follow the First Amendment, it has an Academic Freedom policy which guarantees students the right to freely speak and write on any subject.It turned out that Haverford does not really follow that policy. FIRE also discovered that the school has a new policy in which microaggressions or disrespectful speech are considered violations of the Honor Code. This policy is inconsistent with school policy. FIRE named Haverfords policy their speech code of the Month. This is not an honor!You can click on the image to read more. I've summarized the key points below.Check out this FIRE video on the new amendment.Here's an excerpt taken from Haverfords Honor Code amendment, as posted on the FIRE website.The amended version of the Code prohibits microaggressions. It has more bolded text. In particular, harassment and discrimination including acts of racism, sexism and homophobia, as well as acts of racism and sexism. These discriminatory acts may take many forms. Smaller acts, such as microaggressions, are also considered devoid of respect. We recognize that the opinions of individuals at Haverford College may be intertwined and influence their actions. These practices could be in violation of the Honor Code. We expect students to respect the community standards when they encounter or express political opinions. When expressing political opinions. The Social Honor Code governs all interactions at Haverford. Political discourse is therefore within its scope. It may not be used as a basis for excuses for behavior that violates it. We are required to review our political beliefs if they perpetuate discrimination. . . . [C]onfronted students use the Codes expectation for respect to silence or invalidate the experiences and/or experiences of harmed party. This includes invalidating their experiences of harm by claiming discrimination towards a privileged identity (e.g. claims of reverse-racism). Or refusing to reflect upon their actionsis a violation to the Code. It is also illegal to use one's political beliefs to justify discriminatory or disrespectful words and actions.Microaggression is, of course, a slippery concept. Haverford doesn't even give a definition. FIRE also says that the Honor Code is now a civility code. The addition of language that students must respect community standards when expressing their political opinions makes the Honor Code into a civility Code. Is it now considered microaggression to criticize Israel or Palestine? (Even the dirty Jew's words should be protected! How about Black Lives Matter criticism? What about the tenets and beliefs of Islam or Catholicism. We all know that harmful and violent speech can be interpreted in many ways. Haverfords code now covers much of what we need to protect.Furthermore, the Honor Code violations are ruled by a school's student body. FIRE also states that the school permits protected speech to be punished and it violates its principle of adhering to the First Amendment.FIRE has stated that they are changing Haverford's rating to the worst category of free speech.You can fill out the form below to make a complaint to Haverford.