What does it mean to have freedom of expression in America?
Receiving an education is not just about getting good grades and graduating- we are also learning how to fully participate in the life of an American. In order to truly participate, we must understand our rights as a citizen, or we can possibly loose them all together.
The greatest law in our land is known as the U.S. Constitution, or the Bill of Rights.
This bill guarantees that the people in the U.S. have certain rights which include freedom of religion and speech, and due process of the law.
The First Amendment gives us the right to freely express our selves without government interference, and apples to young people as well as adults.
The University of Central Florida Student Government Association’s position of diversity chair has been given to a student who once posted on social media: “Trump supporters are not welcome on our campus.”
Knight News, a UCF student newspaper, obtained a screenshot of Grayson Lanza’s Facebook post from October 31, 2016:
Daniel Hanna, who cast his vote for Donald Trump in the general election, told Knight News about his interaction with Lanza at a pro-Trump rally on campus in September 2016:
“When we started debating politics, I eventually said, ‘You know the great thing about this country is we can both differ regarding political views but we can openly discuss it,’“ Hanna said. “Then I offered him a handshake. He said, ‘I’m not shaking your hand, I do not tolerate you and you are not welcome here.’”
Hanna also raised concerns about whether Lanza was an appropriate fit for the job.
“You can talk about diversity of skin color, religion, and sexuality all you want,” Hanna said. “But diversity of thought is a real thing, too, and if you’re just disregarding people who disagree with you, and you just want them off campus, what’s the point?”
Lanza’s selection as diversity chair comes weeks after former College Republican Chairwoman Karis Lockhart was rejected by the student government for the position of governmental affairs director. As Kyle Swenson of Knight News put it:
During Lockhart’s hearing, the senate questioned her on sanctuary campuses and whether or not she would be able to remain unbiased in this role. Lockhart’s hearing ended as senators began to discuss her “vibe” and how she made them feel uncomfortable. Lockhart was rejected with a vote count of 5 votes for, and 13 votes against.
Lockhart went on to tell Red Alert Politics that she was turned down because of her conservative views.
“I never thought my background with College Republicans would be a negative in this process,“ she said. ”My experience of leading a group of 100+ students on UCF’s campus, my network in the real world of government, my understanding of UCF protocols, and the relationships I’ve built with administration apparently meant nothing to them because all they saw was ‘Republican’ and voted no.”
“They want everyone to agree with them and not question their viewpoints,” Lockhart added. “So much for diversity.”
Lanza was confirmed as diversity chair by a vote of 19 to 6.