Republicans in Wisconsin are being called “fragile snowflakes” after pushing a bill which would require University of Wisconsin to punish students who disrupt speeches on campus.
The bill would also require the campuses remain “neutral” on issues of public importance. Supporters say its goal is “to protect the freedom of expression on college campuses.”
Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos told Twin Cities Press that university administration could choose from a range of punishments for students who engage in`“violent, abusive, indecent, profane, boisterous, obscene, unreasonably loud, or other disorderly conduct” that interferes with another person’s free speech.
“All across the nation and here at home, we’ve seen protesters trying to silence different viewpoints,” Vos said in a statement. “Free speech means free speech for everyone and not just for the person who speaks the loudest.”
Scot Ross of One Wisconsin Now told Twin Cities Press the bill’s supporters are “fragile snowflakes” trying to punish free speech.
“These Republicans want to make our campuses safe spaces for Republicans to be free of criticism and subject students to legal sanctions if they speak out,” Ross said.
American Civil Liberties Union-Wisconsin legal director Larry Dupuis of the cautioned against the bill’s vague language,” and argued punishing interrupters is “unnecessarily draconian.”
Under the bill, students would be given a disciplinary hearing, with an automatic, semester-long suspension for any student “found to have interfered with someone’s free expression twice.”