Florida Republicans are trying to get a bill through the State’s House of Representatives that would allow students to file suit against university professors who they feel aren’t respecting or giving fair representation to their chosen religious beliefs, and even more frightening than that, their beliefs in general.
Dennis Baxley, the bill’s sponsor, says that the legislation, which is ironically titled The Academic Freedom Bill of Rights, is required because a university education should be more than “one biased view by the professor, who as a dictator controls the
I’m all for balance and fairness, but what’s being proposed here goes way too far. What ever happened to the concept of listening to what somebody is saying, processing it with your own brain power, and then using what you’ve heard and what you already know to formulate your own opinions on the subject and on the world as a whole? The idea that all sides of an issue need to be validated as right headed even when one side has been undoubtedly proven wrong is insane.
And let’s not even start on why, in a day and age where universities claim to be woefully underfunded and students claim to be broke, the State would think it wise to place more of a cost burden on either side over something as ordinary and vital as an academic personal opinion or more than that, a proven fact. What Baxley and his fellow party members are forgetting is that facts are legal and in most cases, so are opinions. I’d like to think that something like this, if it were to pass, would have 0 chance of surviving a constitutional challenge.
And while we’re on the subject of Republicans forgetting things, when did it slip their minds that one of their most dearly held principles is that government shouldn’t be involved in every aspect of the lives of the people? First The patriot Act, then Terri Schiavo, and now the education of future generations. I know I’ve probably missed quite a few along the way but my point is where does it end? I think Michael Moore was right when he wrote that the Republicans and Democrats should merge into 1 big party since it’s hard to tell one from the other anymore.
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