On free speech on campus, and why the French code will be no help

Overland, 1 July 2019. Read the original here. Following conservative hysteria after a short-lived student protest when Bettina Arndt’s ‘fake rape crisis tour’ came to Sydney University last year, many universities have now agreed to implement the code of practice developed by the former Chief Justice, Robert French, in his review of freedom of speech… Continue reading On free speech on campus, and why the French code will be no help

The Ramsay Centre and the reality of ideology

Overland, 28 March 2019. Read the original here. Along with all its other horrors, 15 March was a terrible reminder of the reality of ideology. With the ideas behind the massacre of fifty Christchurch Muslims a click away in the gunman’s manifesto, there was, for once, no shortage of commentators ready to pinpoint how racist… Continue reading The Ramsay Centre and the reality of ideology

Weaponising Learning

Sydney Review of Books, 12 June, 2018. Read the original here. Suddenly, the right has discovered an enthusiasm for funding universities. Not with public money, of course: the government’s moratorium on Commonwealth grant funding – retribution for the Senate’s ongoing refusal to legislate fee rises and funding cuts – remains truculently in place. Instead, government… Continue reading Weaponising Learning

Roz Ward, Barry Spurr And What Universities Are For

New Matilda, 9 June 2016. Read the original here. When for any reason… the administrator of [a university] attempts to dislodge a professor because of his political or religious sentiments, at that moment the institution has ceased to be a university. So affirmed the University of Chicago’s first president in 1892. Going on recent experience,… Continue reading Roz Ward, Barry Spurr And What Universities Are For

Disruptive Protest And Freedom Of Speech: A User’s Guide

New Matilda, March 19 2015. Read the original here. When are protesters justified in disrupting a public event? Can they legitimately do so in the name of freedom of speech? What aspects of the context change the rights and wrongs of a disruption? These kinds of questions are among the most delicate, complicated and important… Continue reading Disruptive Protest And Freedom Of Speech: A User’s Guide

Peak Hour Traffic Trumps The Right To Protest, Court Finds

New Matilda, August 22 2014. Read the original here. And down the slippery slope we go, a few inches more. In a national context characterised by expansion of the state’s powers to monitor the internet, punish whistleblowers, and restrict the power of the media to report matters of public interest, a further incremental affront to… Continue reading Peak Hour Traffic Trumps The Right To Protest, Court Finds