By Kathy Adams Riester, Associate Dean of Students
The Dean of Students Office at the University of Arizona is committed to upholding the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America. We firmly believe that there is no better place for open debate and discussion of ideas, values, and philosophies to occur. One of the basic purposes of the right to Freedom of Speech in the First Amendment is to ensure the “government” (or public university) does not determine what others can say and hear based upon content. It is often the content that one person deems inappropriate that others utilize to gain equal rights and freedoms.
It is essential that those engaged in exercising their free speech rights do so while practicing civility. So, please challenge others thoughts and ideas because academic inquiry is essential to the learning process both in your academic discipline and in out of class activities. This is how thoughts, opinions, and values are formed. We just ask that in the process you:
- Be respectful of others in speech and behavior
- Listen to understand another’s ideas
- Question and dispute ideas in a way that respects and affirms others
- Practice non-violence, using words to inspire change
For more information, tools and resources regarding the #speakyourpeace campaign click here