As champions of government transparency and free speech rights for individuals, Georgia Public Policy Foundation works to ensure an open government where officials are accountable for the power delegated to them. Further, we believe citizens have a right to know who donates to a politician’s campaign so they can ascertain whether undue influence comes into play, and we actively challenge efforts to restrict the ability of nonprofit organizations such as ours to weigh in on policy matters citizens care about.
Disagreement should produce more speech, not less. For every seemingly beyond-the-pale example publicized, others occur on campuses every day. It’s almost enough to make conservatives want to abandon and defund these campuses; at least, that seems to be the conclusion many are reaching.
We Americans have long enjoyed the right to financially support our favored causes. Concomitant with the ability to donate one’s resources is the right to do so privately, without the scrutiny of government regulators.
Recently, the state of Minnesota used a state statute to briefly ban online education. The state’s Office of Higher Education (OHE) informed new online education startup Coursera that the company could no longer provide services in Minnesota because they had not been approved by the state. Georgia officials working to implement SB 289, and on the Governor’s Digital Learning Task Force should note this story. The default position should be to consider the value of creative solutions, not to reflexively look for statutes and other means to stifle them.
A disturbing national trend hit home recently when the University of Georgia’s Office of Student Affairs proposed the establishment of a speech code that would prohibit “intentionally harassing speech” on campus.