Florida Bans Pro-Palestinian Groups from Campus

 

It’s time. They’ve had their say, intimidating Jewish students through their words and actions. They have dragged our rights to Free Speech to a new low. And Gov. Ron DeSantis has said, “enough.” Here’s what’s been enacted:

The head of Florida’s university system has directed schools to disband campus chapters of a pro-Palestinian student group he alleges are aligned in support of terrorists. In a letter Tuesday to the state’s 12 university presidents, State University System Chancellor Ray Rodrigues said two Florida chapters of Students for Justice in Palestine ‘must be deactivated.’ A spokesperson for Gov. Ron DeSantis said the governor directed that the University of Florida and the University of South Florida remove the groups immediately.

Rodrigues’ letter said that a ‘toolkit’ released by the group described the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel as ‘the resistance’ and ‘unequivocally states: ‘Palestinian students in exile are PART of this movement, not in solidarity with this movement.’’

Rodrigues and DeSantis have both said that these protestors are providing “material support” in the way they’ve characterized their relationship with Hamas:

The term ‘material support or resources’ means any property, tangible or intangible, or service, including currency or monetary instruments or financial securities, financial services, lodging, training, expert advice or assistance, safehouses, false documentation or identification, communications equipment, facilities, weapons, lethal substances, explosives, personnel (1 or more individuals who may be or include oneself), and transportation, except medicine or religious materials. . .

Whether this definition applies to their activities is a fair question.

An effort was made to define anti-Semitic actions and statements:

Rodrigues and state education Commissioner Manny Diaz attempted to define actions that constituted antisemitism under Florida law. Their letter said those actions include ‘calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or harming of Jews, often in the name of a radical ideology or an extremist view of religion.’ Another example: ‘Applying a double standard to Israel by requiring behavior of Israel that is not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation, or focusing peace or human rights investigations only in Israel.’

Others protested the governor’s actions:

Val Beron, an activist with Tampa Bay Community Action Committee, had a different view as he participated in an Emergency Rally for Gaza on Wednesday afternoon on Fowler Avenue near the main entrance to USF, just off campus.

The group, which helped organize the rally, ‘has been on campus for years and has never threatened the safety of Jewish students,’ Beron said. ‘I don’t see why people would feel threatened now.’

It’s also worth pointing out that there’s never been a war like the one going on in Israel now, and at some protests in the U.S., pro-Hamas groups are criticizing Jews, not just Israelis.

Another statement that amused me is this one:

Joseph Nohava — an organizer with Tampa Bay Community Action Committee — said the earlier letter by Rodrigues lacked nuance. He noted that protesters who are Jewish have spoken against the Israeli government.

‘The whole thing is absurd,’ Nohava said. “It doesn’t sound like something that would hold up in court. … Israel doesn’t represent Judaism. You don’t conflate a whole religion with a state committing war crimes.’

I have no idea what he means by stating that Rodrigues’ letter lacked nuance. And just because some ignorant Jews have criticized the Israeli government does not explain their support of Hamas. To say that Israel does not represent Judaism is naïve and foolish.

Still, although I support free speech, I am against these protests on campus. In other states, Jewish students have been harassed and threatened. The protestors should be free to protest, but not on campus.

Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

If he’s not, shouldn’t other governors be taking the same action?

Published in Islamist Terrorism
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  1. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    If they lock up protestors who want fair elections, Florida can ban groups that support terrorism.

    • #1
  2. Rodin Member
    Rodin
    @Rodin

    There is a crisis in all of our institutions. Sadly it is in the judiciary as well. There will be lawsuits and the outcome is unclear. I fear we are moving to the point where raw power will rule regardless of the ideology behind that power. 

    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Rodin (View Comment):

    There is a crisis in all of our institutions. Sadly it is in the judiciary as well. There will be lawsuits and the outcome is unclear. I fear we are moving to the point where raw power will rule regardless of the ideology behind that power.

    I have questions about whether he will be successful or not. But at least the effort is being made and the pro-Hamas folks have been put on notice. That’s a good start.

    • #3
  4. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities.  I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy.  I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.  

    • #4
  5. Red Herring Coolidge
    Red Herring
    @EHerring

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities. I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy. I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    Having a say and advocating for violence are two different things. Besides, almost all the attacks against Trump are an attack against free speech. The rest are bogus. Dems set that bar. Make them eat it.

    • #5
  6. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.  

    But can the universities keep them off campus? Let them go to a public park.

    • #6
  7. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    But can the universities keep them off campus? Let them go to a public park.

    I think they can, but as we have seen even events near campus like at Tulane can have spill over effects.

    • #7
  8. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities. I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy. I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    Having a say and advocating for violence are two different things. Besides, almost all the attacks against Trump are an attack against free speech. The rest are bogus. Dems set that bar. Make them eat it.

    I have sympathy for that argument; however, In the end I believe in free speech which means, to me at least, people are allowed to say very offensive and immoral things.  I am not sure even advocating for violence, that isn’t imminent and targeted, crosses that line.  It may be ugly but it isn’t necessarily out of bounds.   As for the democrat attacks on Trump those are completely immoral and represent a profound degradation in the rule of law in this country.

    • #8
  9. Quintus Sertorius Coolidge
    Quintus Sertorius
    @BillGollier

    I 100% think that these protests are misguided at best and nefarious at worst and that they should look at Hamas and other Arab nations for the condition of the Palestinians and that Israel has every right to defend itself however it seems fit. I would also even argue that much of it is Anti-Semitic in nature.(Jerry and Zafar let me have it) However DeSantis has crossed the line banning these organizations…does he have legal authority…probably considering how much power we have granted to the executive branch since 1861 (see President Biden’s new executive order on AI without Congress) but I do not agree with it and would fight against it. I also believe the KKK has the right to exist legally and have the right to assemble etc until or unless they violate civil/natural rights of someone in which case they should face the consequences of laws in place.  So these groups have a right to exists unless they  violate the rights of others or are being a threat to other groups of citizens. If there are specific pro Palestinian groups threatening Jewish groups then it is the duty of the administration to enact a response…not the governor or president to ban this group.

    I detest that DeSantis is using the left’s play book but here we are…..

    I do find it humorous hearing the left’s pearl clutching when they have been doing this for decades to anyone to the right of Jimmy Carter….

    • #9
  10. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Quintus Sertorius (View Comment):
    However DeSantis has crossed the line banning these organizations…does he have legal authority

    Keep in mind that he took these actions only against public universities, not private.

    • #10
  11. Quintus Sertorius Coolidge
    Quintus Sertorius
    @BillGollier

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Quintus Sertorius (View Comment):
    However DeSantis has crossed the line banning these organizations…does he have legal authority

    Keep in mind that he took these actions only against public universities, not private.

    Hi Susan…

     First I would like to reiterate that I do not in any support these groups or their message…it is misguided at best (listen to any interview by Dan Senor to see how badly and nefariously Hamas has governed Gaza….not to mention the blind eye by the rest of Arab and Muslim world) and anti-Semitic at worst…..however…in the United States any government entity banning groups whole cloth without due process of law imho is wrong….the college administration needs to deal with it unless unless said groups are really infringing on other groups but that has to be  rectified by due process of law….this is my own thoughts on the matter….as I said I’m sure Governor DeSantis has the power to do this in a public university since we have given the executive so much power…..I just don’t think the governor should have that power to go after groups whole cloth….just my own opinion on the matter….

    I am fully aware the left has done this globally for decades….but that doesn’t make it right….just my thoughts…

    • #11
  12. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    There are already hundreds of constraints against the “absolute right to free speech” on state university campuses. There have to be.

    In fact, there is no “absolute right to free speech” anywhere in our society. Public libraries do not make copies of Playboy magazine available to six-year-olds (at least, not that I know of).

    Promoting murder is not allowed, nor should it be.

    There is plenty of land available throughout the world in which “Palestinians” could live. The causes that Hamas and Hezbollah are promoting require stealing Israel from the Jews who live there now and killing those Jews to accomplish that. That is mass murder. It should not be supported by public universities anywhere.

    I applaud DeSantis on this action.

    In my small town in Massachusetts, when I was active in the life of our school district, we had a problem with a “religious” group that wanted to use our schools for their meetings after normal school hours. I sat through hours of fascinating debates on this subject. In the end, the “no” decision came down to the fact that there were some cults operating out of schools throughout the state, and we did not want them in our town luring children away from a healthy town- and family-centered life to some weird satanic group. We had to change our local laws to prohibit any religious groups from meeting on the schools’ premises, including all of the local Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts troops. But it was worth it to us to keep this cult from operating from our school buildings.

    We looked at the issue from many perspectives. One that kept bothering us was that any group that we permitted to meet in our buildings appeared to the public and to families as a group we had vetted and endorsed somehow. In fact, we had nothing to do with those groups. But that was not how the situation appeared to people deciding whether to take them seriously or not. Perception is a controlling factor here.

    A state university represents that state’s community. It belongs to them. What it says and does is what the community wants to be said or done. Just as a private university represents its board of directors, a state university represents the community that supports it. Thus, state universities have the right and responsibility to control who says what.

    DeSantis is well within his rights and responsibilities to do this. Interestingly, it says to me that he understands the Bill of Rights in its complexity. Yes, you have the right to free speech but not if that speech defames someone wrongly. Yes, you have the right to free speech, but not to minors who are protected by their parents or guardians. And so on.

    • #12
  13. Doug Watt Member
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    Susan is presenting an interesting free speech issue. Most state statutes acknowledge that both private and public spaces have someone who has lawful authority over those spaces.

    Colleges and universities have campus police departments and administrators that are in the lawful authority sphere. If a demonstration moves from an outdoor space into classrooms or other interior spaces, then at some point a decision can be made to remove demonstrators. I don’t believe there is a right to disrupt classes or the safety and security of students attending classes.

    Threats made to students who reside in campus housing, or the breach of campus housing might rise to the top of the felony scale just as a home invasion burglary does.

    Outdoor demonstrations that result in arson, vandalism, assaults, or blocking traffic is not protected speech in any location whether or not someone is a student.

    Law enforcement officers on campus should be monitoring social media and require a permit to demonstrate. A refusal to apply for the demonstration permit does not mean the event cannot take place. LEO’s should use the refusal to do a deeper dive into the background of the organizers.

    There is always a threat that any political group can include violent individuals that attach themselves to the cause of the month club. Specific threats to a student(s) or a staff member should be investigated. Students or staff who make those threats should be expelled, or fired, and subject to a criminal trespass arrest if they are found to be on campus in the future.

    • #13
  14. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Quintus Sertorius (View Comment):
    I am fully aware the left has done this globally for decades….but that doesn’t make it right….just my thoughts…

    Thanks for weighing in, QS.

    • #14
  15. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    MarciN (View Comment):
    DeSantis is well within his rights and responsibilities to do this. Interestingly, it says to me that he understands the Bill of Rights in its complexity. Yes, you have the right to free speech but not if that speech defames someone wrongly. Yes, you have the right to free speech, but not to minors who are protected by their parents or guardians. And so on.

    Well thought out explanation, Marci, as you often do! Thanks.

    • #15
  16. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Doug Watt (View Comment):
    Colleges and universities have campus police departments and administrators that are in the lawful authority sphere. If a demonstration moves from an outdoor space into classrooms or other interior spaces, then at some point a decision can be made to remove demonstrators. I don’t believe there is a right to disrupt classes or the safety and security of students attending classes.

    Thanks for your thoughts, Doug. 

    • #16
  17. Doug Watt Member
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Doug Watt (View Comment):
    Colleges and universities have campus police departments and administrators that are in the lawful authority sphere. If a demonstration moves from an outdoor space into classrooms or other interior spaces, then at some point a decision can be made to remove demonstrators. I don’t believe there is a right to disrupt classes or the safety and security of students attending classes.

    Thanks for your thoughts, Doug.

    I’ve seen my share of chaos on a small and large scale. Chaos, mayhem, and the rationalizations that come with it does not impress me.

    • #17
  18. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Quintus Sertorius (View Comment):

    I 100% think that these protests are misguided at best and nefarious at worst and that they should look at Hamas and other Arab nations for the condition of the Palestinians and that Israel has every right to defend itself however it seems fit. I would also even argue that much of it is Anti-Semitic in nature.(Jerry and Zafar let me have it) However DeSantis has crossed the line banning these organizations…does he have legal authority…probably considering how much power we have granted to the executive branch since 1861 (see President Biden’s new executive order on AI without Congress) but I do not agree with it and would fight against it. I also believe the KKK has the right to exist legally and have the right to assemble etc until or unless they violate civil/natural rights of someone in which case they should face the consequences of laws in place. So these groups have a right to exists unless they violate the rights of others or are being a threat to other groups of citizens. If there are specific pro Palestinian groups threatening Jewish groups then it is the duty of the administration to enact a response…not the governor or president to ban this group.

    I detest that DeSantis is using the left’s play book but here we are…..

    I do find it humorous hearing the left’s pearl clutching when they have been doing this for decades to anyone to the right of Jimmy Carter….

    Banning groups is bad. (See, for example, the attempts in Germany to ban the AfD.) Banning illegal things they do is fine.

    • #18
  19. Bunsen Coolidge
    Bunsen
    @Bunsen

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities. I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy. I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    Having a say and advocating for violence are two different things. Besides, almost all the attacks against Trump are an attack against free speech. The rest are bogus. Dems set that bar. Make them eat it.

    I have sympathy for that argument; however, In the end I believe in free speech which means, to me at least, people are allowed to say very offensive and immoral things. I am not sure even advocating for violence, that isn’t imminent and targeted, crosses that line. It may be ugly but it isn’t necessarily out of bounds. As for the democrat attacks on Trump those are completely immoral and represent a profound degradation in the rule of law in this country.

    Advocating violence is akin to crying “Fire” in a crowded theater.   I seem to remember a lot of chatter that the shooter at the Republican baseball team practice (Scalise was critically wounded) took someone’s “free speech” to heart. 

    I believe it is very targeted and direct.  Hamas  wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth and kill all Jews.  Its in their charter and their actions are directed towards that goal.  If you support Hamas, you support their “cause”.  IMO – pretty straight forward. 

    • #19
  20. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    Bunsen (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities. I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy. I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    Having a say and advocating for violence are two different things. Besides, almost all the attacks against Trump are an attack against free speech. The rest are bogus. Dems set that bar. Make them eat it.

    I have sympathy for that argument; however, In the end I believe in free speech which means, to me at least, people are allowed to say very offensive and immoral things. I am not sure even advocating for violence, that isn’t imminent and targeted, crosses that line. It may be ugly but it isn’t necessarily out of bounds. As for the democrat attacks on Trump those are completely immoral and represent a profound degradation in the rule of law in this country.

    Advocating violence is akin to crying “Fire” in a crowded theater. I seem to remember a lot of chatter that the shooter at the Republican baseball team practice (Scalise was critically wounded) took someone’s “free speech” to heart.

    I believe it is very targeted and direct. Hamas wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth and kill all Jews. Its in their charter and their actions are directed towards that goal. If you support Hamas, you support their “cause”. IMO – pretty straight forward.

    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban.  I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas.  I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia.  All of these are advocating for violence.  I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all).  I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide.  I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors.  This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech.   That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.  

    • #20
  21. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban.  I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas.  I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia.  All of these are advocating for violence.  I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all).  I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide.  I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors.  This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech.   That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.  

    What’s tricky is that when mob protests are going on, those against their cause believe they are being targeted in those moments. I’d wager that the mob wants them to feel targeted and in danger. And as happened at Tulane, it’s very easy when emotions are high for violence to break out. No easy answers, but so appreciate the discussion.

    • #21
  22. Bunsen Coolidge
    Bunsen
    @Bunsen

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Bunsen (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Red Herring (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn:

    Do you think DeSantis is violating the First Amendment and free speech?

     

    It is pretty close to the line; however, I don’t think he is saying the groups can’t exist informally just that they can’t be a sanctioned or recognized group by the State run Universities. I think this is in his power to do; however, It makes me a little queasy. I vehemently denounce the message of the people protesting for Hamas; however, I do believe they have the right to make [expletive deleted] of themselves in public.

    Having a say and advocating for violence are two different things. Besides, almost all the attacks against Trump are an attack against free speech. The rest are bogus. Dems set that bar. Make them eat it.

    I have sympathy for that argument; however, In the end I believe in free speech which means, to me at least, people are allowed to say very offensive and immoral things. I am not sure even advocating for violence, that isn’t imminent and targeted, crosses that line. It may be ugly but it isn’t necessarily out of bounds. As for the democrat attacks on Trump those are completely immoral and represent a profound degradation in the rule of law in this country.

    Advocating violence is akin to crying “Fire” in a crowded theater. I seem to remember a lot of chatter that the shooter at the Republican baseball team practice (Scalise was critically wounded) took someone’s “free speech” to heart.

    I believe it is very targeted and direct. Hamas wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth and kill all Jews. Its in their charter and their actions are directed towards that goal. If you support Hamas, you support their “cause”. IMO – pretty straight forward.

    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban. I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas. I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia. All of these are advocating for violence. I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all). I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide. I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors. This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech. That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.

    I hear and respect your thoughts.  I think you and I are on the same road but just at different spots on that road.  

    • #22
  23. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban.  I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas.  I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia.  All of these are advocating for violence.  I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all).  I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide.  I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors.  This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech.   That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.

    It’s not that DeSantis is imposing a statewide ban on the existence of groups espousing the point of view of Hamas. He is only imposing a ban on their operating on state university property.

    I think he was right and he has the responsibility to do so. For one thing, these groups are a threat to Jewish students.

    • #23
  24. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    MarciN (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban. I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas. I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia. All of these are advocating for violence. I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all). I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide. I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors. This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech. That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.

    It’s not that DeSantis imposing a statewide ban on the existence of groups espousing the point of view of Hamas. He is only imposing a ban on their operating on state university property.

    I definitely agree he is acting within his powers as governor.  I didn’t mean to say or imply he wasn’t.

    I think he was right and has the responsibility to do so. For one thing, these groups are a threat to Jewish students.

    This is where I get queasy.  I do think there is a good case to be made for what DeSantis is doing on campus, but we have seen these same tactics used to target other groups because they make a group feel “unsafe”.   This is a much more justified concern here, so I have a lot of sympathy with what DeSantis is trying to do.  

    • #24
  25. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Raxxalan (View Comment):

    MarciN (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban. I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas. I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia. All of these are advocating for violence. I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all). I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide. I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors. This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech. That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.

    It’s not that DeSantis imposing a statewide ban on the existence of groups espousing the point of view of Hamas. He is only imposing a ban on their operating on state university property.

    I definitely agree he is acting within his powers as governor. I didn’t mean to say or imply he wasn’t.

    I think he was right and has the responsibility to do so. For one thing, these groups are a threat to Jewish students.

    This is where I get queasy. I do think there is a good case to be made for what DeSantis is doing on campus, but we have seen these same tactics used to target other groups because they make a group feel “unsafe”. This is a much more justified concern here, so I have a lot of sympathy with what DeSantis is trying to do.

    And I agree with you on this. Sigh.

    As I wrote in my earlier comment, when we had our debate in our school district about the use of the school property by religious groups, those debates occupied our attention for several three- to four-hour sessions.

    Sometimes expediency ends up ruling the day. As far as I know, the ban on religious groups using our school facilities lasted only for a year or two, until the threat of these cults operating in our area went away.

    Absolutes are hard to come by in some of these decisions.

    • #25
  26. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Ron DeSantis for president! …um, he’s already running.  ;)  OK, this only solidifies my vote for him.

    • #26
  27. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Seriously, with all the campus problems of threats across the country (Cooper Union, Columbia, Cornell that I come to mind) I think an across the board moratorium on protesting across colleges and universities makes sense.  You have a right to free speech, but you don’t have a right to do it on someone else’s institution.  Even if it’s a government owned institution.  And this is only a moratorium, not a cancellation of speech forever.  

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  28. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Manny (View Comment):

    Seriously, with all the campus problems of threats across the country (Cooper Union, Columbia, Cornell that I come to mind) I think an across the board moratorium on protesting across colleges and universities makes sense. You have a right to free speech, but you don’t have a right to do it on someone else’s institution. Even if it’s a government owned institution. And this is only a moratorium, not a cancellation of speech forever.

    Manny, I looked back at the part of the Rodrigues letter that was published and I didn’t see moratorium. They are “deactivating” the group. How that will play out, I don’t know.

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  29. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Manny (View Comment):

    Seriously, with all the campus problems of threats across the country (Cooper Union, Columbia, Cornell that I come to mind) I think an across the board moratorium on protesting across colleges and universities makes sense. You have a right to free speech, but you don’t have a right to do it on someone else’s institution. Even if it’s a government owned institution. And this is only a moratorium, not a cancellation of speech forever.

    Manny, I looked back at the part of the Rodrigues letter that was published and I didn’t see moratorium. They are “deactivating” the group. How that will play out, I don’t know.

    The moratorium was my idea across all the colleges in the country.  I wasn’t implying that was what DeSantis was dong.  At least I didn’t mean to.

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  30. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Raxxalan (View Comment):
    I have advocated for the destruction of the Taliban. I have also advocated for the destruction of Hamas. I have advocated for Ukraine against Russia. All of these are advocating for violence. I don’t obviously support Hamas (I just called for their destruction after all). I think people have the right to call for nonspecific violence including a genocide. I believe it makes them miserable excuses for human beings, but in a way I am glad they have shown their true colors. This having been said once the protest turns from “From the river to the sea” or what ever coded threat to let’s go down the street and bomb the synagogue then it is no longer protected speech. That is what I mean by targeted and imminent.

    What’s tricky is that when mob protests are going on, those against their cause believe they are being targeted in those moments. I’d wager that the mob wants them to feel targeted and in danger. And as happened at Tulane, it’s very easy when emotions are high for violence to break out. No easy answers, but so appreciate the discussion.

    That is true.  I do think ugly and offensive and even violent language is protected speech; however, it doesn’t justify acting on the speech with violence.  I definitely agree that the protesters are trying to intimidate people.  I don’t like that but I don’t see a way to ban that which couldn’t be used alternatively against a group I support.

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