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Assemblyman Chuck DeVore’s recent post in the OCblog:

Daniel Pipes, UCI, Free Speech and the MSU

Tonight at UCI should be interesting. Daniel Pipes is speaking at the Pacific Ballroom D from 7 to 9 p.m. Pipes is a senior Giuliani foreign policy adviser. The last time he spoke on campus, members of the Muslim Student Union disrupted his speech.

Free speech ought to mean that anyone can speak (write) their mind about issues. It does not give free license to shout down others. That isn’t free speech – it’s doing violence on the free speech of others.

If Daniel Pipes wants to, for example, discuss the Republic of the Sudan’s use of Islamic Sharia law to charge a British teacher with inciting religious hatred after she allowed her students to name a teddy bear Muhammad, an offense that could subject her to 40 lashes then that’s his right.

If UCI’s Muslim Student Union wants to have a meeting discussing the Republic of the Sudan’s use of Islamic Sharia law and why they agree or disagree with its applications, then anyone should be free to listen without disrupting the talk.

I expect to attend tonight’s meeting. I will be watching to see if Mr. Pipes is allowed to speak without disruption and, if he is disrupted, what, if anything, will be done to defend his First Amendment rights in a citadel of academic freedom.

All the best,

Chuck DeVore
State Assemblyman, 70th District