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Free speech again quashed at Harvard

RSVPeeved Dept.
It should come as no surprise to readers of “Freedom Watch” that yet another instance of political, intellectual, and academic censorship has sprung up at Harvard, the self-touted pinnacle of higher education.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  October 21, 2009

gates list

The Gates case isn't about race

Doesn't Matter If You're Black or White Dept.
The weeks-long hubbub over the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis "Skip" Gates Jr. by the Cambridge Police Department has centered on race, understandably, for two reasons: 1) the African-American population has suffered inequitably in its relations with law enforcement across this country, and 2) a race story is easier for the media to tell — and to sell.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  August 05, 2009


Muzzle Awards: Collegiate Division

New England campuses muzzle free speech
In a 1957 Supreme Court decision upholding the free-speech rights of university professors ( Sweezy v. New Hampshire ), Justice Felix Frankfurter quoted prominent South African scholars on the importance of academic freedom.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  July 10, 2009


Guilty until proven guilty

Freedom Watch
The US Supreme Court's June 18 decision denying prisoners access to DNA testing — a procedure that could reliably prove innocence — adds to the high court's decades-long shameful record on criminal-justice issues.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  June 24, 2009



Stephen Breyer may be the right man at the wrong time
Judge Stephen Breyer, Bill Clinton's latest pick for the Supreme Court, has attracted support so broad that it spans ideological and political differences.  
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  June 11, 2009


Sotomayor's mixed message on free speech

Freedom Watch
Minutes after President Barack Obama announced that he was nominating appellate judge Sonia Sotomayor for the vacant seat on the Supreme Court, battle lines were drawn on the pre-scripted questions of "post-racial" America.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  June 03, 2009


Sunshine on the ACLU: a mea culpa

Freedom Watch
"Standing up to your political enemies is easy, fun, and often profitable," writes Barney Frank, on the lead jacket blurb for Worst Instincts: Cowardice, Conformity, and the ACLU.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  May 06, 2009


The Impeachinator

Watchdog Fein
From Caligula to Obama: Bruce Fein watches them all.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  November 24, 2008


Since Harvard came out

Freedom watch
It was a typical Harvard alumni event, but not a typical, self-congratulatory Crimson “glory days” fest.  
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  October 02, 2008


Are universities selling out to oil nations?

As big bucks beckon, Gulf campuses of American universities are booming
As Academia searches for elusive dollars in a downward economy, oil-rich nations are enticing American schools to open satellite campuses in the Gulf.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  September 25, 2008


A legal setback for Charlie

Freedom Watch
Free speech has won in the struggle between the MBTA and three MIT undergrads who claim to have uncovered flaws in the T’s electronic fare-collection system.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  August 20, 2008


Parody flunks out

Political humor is no longer welcome in Academia as administrators choke the life out of parody
Artist Barry Blitt’s brilliant illustration — which sought to satirize the naysayers who portray Obama as a flag-burning, unpatriotic Muslim and his wife as a black-power radical — cut to the core of today’s political paradox.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  July 30, 2008


Habeas-corpus rights restored to enemy combatants

One of our most important civil-liberty victories to date
This past week, the Supreme Court rejected the Bush administration’s astonishing claim that it had the power to detain suspected “enemy combatants” at Guantánamo Bay — potentially for life — without fair proceedings or meaningful access to the federal courts.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  June 18, 2008


More police, less Harvard

Freedom watch
The Harvard Crimson reported this week the arrest of two non-student demonstrators at a student-organized protest in front of Holyoke Center.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  April 16, 2008


The Gray Lady, the FCC, and indecency

Freedom watch
Phoenix readers must think I’m obsessed with four-letter locker-room words, but I’m really not.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  March 26, 2008


The briefly indecent Boston Globe

Freedom watch
It was startling to see the Boston Globe ’s online edition publish a Reuters wire-service article on Monday, March 17, containing the words “fuck” and “shit.”
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  March 19, 2008


Newspapers censor Bono’s ‘fucking’ gaffe

The FCC’s ‘broadcast indecency’ rules: Still, well, bullshit
Why does our ostensibly “free” press insist on acting like prudes or cowards when reporting stories for which it’s vital that readers learn someone said “fuck” rather than an undefined “expletive”?
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  March 12, 2008


Truth and illusion

The Big Dig settlement
There is a word for when a private party threatens to get someone indicted unless money is paid: extortion.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  January 30, 2008


Ring of fire

The deadbeat FBI fails to pay its phone bills and jeopardizes its wiretapping program
An ugly squabble between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the nation’s biggest phone companies has, in one nasty blow, recast the image of all the entities involved.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  January 23, 2008


Torture-tapes template

Bush-administration lawyers could be nailed for their role in destroying evidence in the CIA scandal, thanks to a quiet Connecticut child-porn case
Did the Bush-administration lawyers, and the CIA operatives they advised, commit obstruction of justice by destroying the now-infamous CIA-interrogation videotapes?
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  December 16, 2008



The DEA’s bad-faith war on pain doctors
Things haven’t been going well as of late for Needham-based chronic-pain specialist Dr. Joseph Zolot.
By: HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  September 26, 2007

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