Tips for facing free-speech crises in academia: Opinion

October 6, 2021
Academics facing free-speech crises need to know how to appropriately respond to accusations, write Donald A Downs, Robert P George, and Keith E Whittington. Downs, George, and Whittington argue that professors need a “first-aid kit” to help them minimize damage if they experience a free-speech crisis. The authors provide a variety of tips for instructors, including encouraging them to not rush to apologize if there is nothing to apologize for, to refrain from responding to public attacks until they receive advice, and to understand that their institution may abandon them. “Mistakes made in the initial stage can have catastrophic consequences,” write the authors. “Proceed deliberately, apply first aid, and seek assistance.” The Chronicle of Higher Ed (Editorial)