Phi Beta Cons

A Critique of Bollinger’s Q&A Free Speech Standard

In a recent article in The Columbia Current, student editor David Feith explores whether University President Lee Bollinger was suppressing free speech when he canceled a planned speech on campus in fall 2006 by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Feith concludes that Bollinger’s state reason for this action – that he could not be certain that the Iranian president would agree to a question-and-answer session – is “a weak standard.”