Public Comment

A Test for UC Berkeley's Free Speech Policy

Carol Denney
Friday September 26, 2014 - 01:49:00 PM

Your comments about the response you received to the free speech issue miss the pertinent point. 

How about a test? If this is in fact a new era of respect for each other's views, and if there is indeed cause for celebration of a new era of free speech, why not ask Chancellor Dirks to retire the SLAPP-suit still in place against me and other activists who spoke out against university policy in 1991? 

I love the FSMers, who used to as least put one of the SLAPPed activists on a panel somewhere, but year after year we seem to have to remind them that it isn't quite party time for some of us. 

Try to imagine waking up to a phone call saying you're expected in civil court the next day to answer to a civil complaint against you and 50 "John Does" claiming you've caused over a quarter million dollars in damages to the University of California, your alma mater. 

SLAPP suits are intimidation techniques. Universities have no business spending scarce public funds silencing dissent. Ask Dirks to drop the SLAPP-suit now.