Emma Camp: I Came to College Eager to Debate

For the Cavalier Daily, a student newspaper at the University of Virginia, Emma Camp has written and interned on the topic of free speech on campus. She pens the following in the New York Times –

What Did Emma Camp Said in the Free Speech

It is every week that I look for a professor in the philosophy department’s office hours who is prepared to discuss with me the hard ethical concerns generated by her gender and sexuality course.

Emma Camp: I Came to College Eager to Debate

We speak in hushed tones as if someone may hear us. On the University of Virginia campus, where I’m ending my senior year, so many discussions are dominated by whispers and worried looks.

During a diversity workshop for a student club, a friend’s voice softens as she bemoans the exclusion of a kid who said something well-meaning but mildly insensitive.

When I mention a talk defending Thomas Jefferson against contemporary criticism, another friend closes his bedroom door. He warns us that his roommate might be able to hear us.

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What Did She Said About Teachers and Fellows

Learn from my teachers and fellow students is why I went to college The idea of a place that values and encourages a wide range of viewpoints and vigorous debate appealed to me.

It has instead been defined by tight ideological conformity in my collegiate experience. When it comes to discussing politics, students of all political persuasions keep their opinions bottled inside.

Even though I am a liberal who has participated in abortion rights demonstrations and written about standing up to prejudice, I still find it difficult to express myself fully.

Why Some Students Ceased Speaking Up in the Classroom

Many students have ceased speaking up in the classroom because of the hostility they receive for expressing their views that aren’t popular, fearing poorer scores if they don’t.

More than 37,000 students at 159 colleges were surveyed in College Pulse’s 2021 study, which found that 80% of students self-censor at least some of the time.

Forty-eight percent of first-year college students said that discussing contentious topics in class makes them “somewhat uncomfortable” or “extremely uncomfortable.”

According to a survey of students at the University of Virginia, 57% of those surveyed agreed.

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Rekindling the conversation over “cancel culture” was an opinion piece published in an American journal. It quickly became the focus of intense Twitter arguments “What exactly does censorship entail?

A student’s opinion post discusses how she enrolled in college “excited to debate.” “but she was forced to self-censor herself because of the way her friends viewed her views.

Those who disagreed on Twitter said it wasn’t censorship, while others called it a take born of privilege.