Should professors have more free speech rights than others?

If we engaged in widely publicized hateful or hurtful or vile speech, our employers would likely begin job termination procedures within 24 hours regardless of whether we made such comments in a private capacity or not.

Professors and teachers argue their speech is protected by “academic freedom”, which they assert protects them from sanctions (or as seen below, even criticism by others) for engaging in hate speech. They assert they have greater speech rights than the rest of us. Randa Jarrar  says “I will never be fired” because she says, she has tenure:

While she asserts that her tenure gives her absolute freedom of speech, university officials publicly disagreed with her claim. Further views on that from the Washington Post.

A different Fresno State professor argues, in so many words, that objecting to his speech is wrong – while simultaneously condemning the speech of those criticizing him for his comments.  He asserts that due to academic freedom he has greater free speech rights than the rest of us and that he should be exempt from consequences (Read it: Fresno State’s Castro didn’t defend my free speech– from the title, he demands others defend his speech, thereby desiring to control the speech of others.)

The First Amendment restricts the government from passing laws controlling (most) speech; it does not require employers to embrace your speech nor does it prohibit employers for sanctioning you for your speech.  Nor does it prohibit others from condemning your speech and calling for sanctions. The First Amendment does not call upon others to defend your speech.

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) says ““Randa Jarrar’s speech is constitutionally protected, and Fresno State cannot, consistent with the First Amendment, discipline her for it”. That protection, however, does not extend to the rest of us, who as noted above, would be quickly fired.

Most expect professors and teachers to engage in civil discourse, based on facts and logic, and to not adopt the methods of propagandists using emotional language, swearing, hurtful and hateful speech, and doxxing a suicide crisis phone line. This is the behavior of middle school students – and not what we expect of professionals.

By creating two classes of free speech – those in a protected class and those who are not in a protected class – we distort public discourse.

For example, in my state all public sector workers are protected by law from retaliation in any form for their political views or activism. Private sector workers in “at will” employment have no protection and can be fired for any reason, including their political views.

This means public sector workers have a greater freedom to influence the political process than do private sector workers, giving public sector workers greater political power than private sector workers. This distorts the public discourse, harming democracy.

This distorted concept of free speech becomes a powerful tool in propaganda messaging. Randa Jarrar used the simple method of Name Calling (Bush is a racist). Academics frequently use the Appeal to Authority argumentative form (or as Jarrar put it, people want to listen to here, she’s a tenured professor and your not) but some also use their unique academic freedom to say what they want knowing that others are gagged. Which is a form of censorship that applies to one class but not the other.

Should some people have a greater right to engage in “free speech” – including hate speech – than others?

Note – my comments have nothing to do with left- versus right-wing faculty, causes, statements or proponents. My comments are about the question of whether some are more entitled to greater free speech rights than others and the effect this has on public discourse. Further, the actions of (presumably) a few faculty tarnish the reputation of the school and diminish the value of degrees earned by students at these schools. How is such nasty discourse helpful to anyone and how does it lead to making everyone’s lives better?

#Facebook ad sales team told politicians that FB can “hand them the election” #DeleteFacebook

Until literally a few days before, this entire ad sales team at Facebook was literally telling every politician with any budget that Facebook can actually hand them the election. It is incredibly disingenuous and strange for an exec to get up and say that there’s no way Facebook could have potentially impacted the election.

Source: Antonio Garcia Martinez, former Facebook Employee Interview

One of many Zuckerberg lies. It blew my mind when when the CEO of an advertising company (FB) said they had no influence on the election. In other words, advertising on the Facebook network does not work?

#Facebook used to brag about its ability to influence elections #DeleteFacebook

Facebook’s website had an entire section devoted to touting the “success stories” of political campaigns that used the social network to influence electoral outcomes. That page, however, is now gone, even as the 2018 congressional primaries get underway.

Source: Facebook Quietly Hid Webpages Bragging of Ability to Influence Elections

#Facebook is a platform for mind control #DeleteFacebook #Zuckerberg

Perhaps at some point in the past few years you’ve told Facebook that you like, say, Kim Kardashian West.

….

What you probably missed is that researchers had figured out how to tie your interest in Ms. Kardashian West to certain personality traits, such as how extroverted you are (very), how conscientious (more than most) and how open-minded (only somewhat). And when your fondness for Ms. Kardashian West is combined with other interests you’ve indicated on Facebook, researchers believe their algorithms can predict the nuances of your political views with better accuracy than your loved ones.

Facebook creates a detailed psychological profile of you, to determine your weaknesses, vulnerabilities and key times to “see you something” via advertising or propaganda messaging. “Something” may be a product, a service or someone’s ideology.

More on this in the next post.

#Facebook’s massive propaganda platform exposed, could lead to totalitarianism #DeleteFacebook

Perhaps a bit of hyperbole but perhaps not:

For the sake of a Procter and Gamble being able to save money on selling soap powder, we have created the means for monitoring and controlling the behaviors of billions of people and laying them open to political and ideological manipulations.

Selling ideas uses the same data as selling shoes. Consumerism enables the technologies of totalitarianism. My fear is that we could paint ourselves into a very unpleasant corner — a N. Korea, but with far more powerful systems for oppression and suppression of dissent.

Source: Facebook fallout: Big Brands’ adversarial ad strategies exposed | ZDNet

Feeling relieved to now see everyone pointing out that Facebook’s propaganda platform is dangerous and reckless. This, obviously, has been an underlying theme of this blog since 2014.

New FTC Commissioner nominee was suggested by Sen Schumer’s daughter, who works for #Facebook #DeleteFacebook

Zuckerberg owns the Democratic Party leadership:

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.Schumer, whose daughter works as a product marketing manager at Facebook, recommended Slaughter in late January, and the nomination was reportedly held up over background checks.

just two weeks ago, Schumer said that tech companies were working to police themselves, that Facebook was a “a very positive force,” and that he was “sympathetic” to the company’s situation. The Cambridge Analytica scandal dropped a week later.

Ugly.

Source: The U.S. Government Is Finally Scrambling to Regulate Facebook

U.S. State Department will require most visitors to U.S. to turn over their social media history

Source: Extreme vetting: State Dept. to demand tourists’ social media history – Washington Times

With the poll (below) saying 86% of Americans don’t care about privacy, does that mean that the few percent of us who have reduced our social media exposure will be suspect?

The U.S. State Department will demand your 5 years worth of social media identifiers, phone numbers and email addresses. Soon, U.S. residents will almost certainly be asked to provide the same information to other countries.

Should #Facebook be used for voting in general elections? (OMG – No!) #DeleteFacebook

This data breach should put an end to any possibility of Facebook being used for voting, and its an opportunity for all of us to rethink the trust we have put in social media companies,” he said in response to a question on the Facebook controversy.

Source: Facebook saga question on credibility of social media: Experts – The Financial Express

Any discussion of using Facebook for voting in an election should be killed off forever, as should the idea that Zuckerberg might run for President (then he could use the NSA to spy on us!)

The incredible arrogance of #Facebook executives on display (Youtube video) #DeleteFacebook

Facebook’s vice president of public policy for the Asia-Pacific region arrogantly interrupts and tells off the Chair of the Singapore Parliamentary committee asking questions about Cambridge Analytica. The raw arrogance of the Facebook VP is breath taking, trying tell the Committee what questions they are allowed to ask of him. The Chair politely, calmly and firmly shreds Facebook’s VP.

This is Facebook. They care about no one but themselves – and stealing your personal information.