Updated July 29 at 1:35 p.m.
A former Business School professor has filed a lawsuit claiming that a senior professor harassed her and delayed her research when she rejected his advances. This harassment allegedly led to her wrongful termination, the plaintiff testified in court on Tuesday....
To the editor: In the op-ed piece "Wild, wild Wilders," (Oct. 22, 2009) Adel Elsohly claimed that the Geert Wilders event last Wednesday was "less about freedom of speech and more about inciting fear within a community." However, I believe that Wilders' speech encouraged dialogue and debate, key principles of free speech. John Stuart Mill, an influential classical liberal philosopher, wrote in his book "On Liberty," "There ought to exist the fullest liberty of professing and discussing, as a matter of ethical conviction, any doctrine, however immoral it may be considered." Freedom of speech is also codified in the Constitution. One has every right to say things that may be deemed hateful or offensive. The Columbia University College Republicans and Columbia University supported the principle of freedom of speech by inviting Wilders to speak. However, last week's op-ed piece attempted turn the argument into one about hate speech. Elsohly claimed, "The line between freedom of speech and hate speech was crossed" during the Wilders event. While many of Wilders' statements are offensive, he had every right to say them at last Wednesday's event. The event was about freedom of speech, and as such Wilders expressed, as he well should have, the ideas that he has been persecuted for holding in Europe. To call any form of speech that is offensive "hate speech" is simply a form of censorship. People use the term to silence those with whom they disagree. The op-ed by Elsohly calls what Wilders said "hate speech," but then fails to clearly define it. Furthermore, I think that it is impossible to define a term as vague as "hate speech." Anything that someone finds offensive could be placed into the "hate speech" category. For this reason, in the United States, people are allowed to say whatever they want, however unpopular, unless it incites, according to the Supreme Court, "imminent lawless action." Therefore, I applaud all those who were respectful to Wilders and refrained from calling his words a form of "hate speech," even though his views were at times extreme. Civil discourse of ideas is a chief tenet of freedom of speech and democracy. Tyler Trumbach, CC '13 Deputy of Finance, Columbia University College Republicans Oct. 28, 2009...