Chuck Grassley

United States Senator from Iowa

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Grassley: Academic Freedom Matters as Students Return to Campus

Aug 03, 2020
Prepared Floor Remarks by U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Academic Freedom Matters as Students Return to Campus
Monday, August 3, 2020
 
Recently, my friend from Utah, former Senator Orrin Hatch, wrote about American academia and our so-called cancel culture. 
 
I encourage all Americans to read his essay published in the Wall Street Journal.
 
Senator Hatch calls for a “renewed commitment to intellectual diversity” and a “radical overhaul of campus culture.”
 
I agree. Our institutions of higher learning need to wake up and welcome the open exchange of ideas – in the classroom and across campus.
 
Silencing or shaming students from sharing divergent views are antithetical to the American way. Our next generation of leaders deserves better.
 
As colleges begin the school year, they should focus on keeping their students safe from the virus.
 
But they shouldn’t worry one bit about keeping students safe from the free exchange of ideas or prevent professors from teaching different schools of thought.
 
Herd mentality limits intellectual curiosity and that’s bad for academic freedom.
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