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Sydney Uni wants to be able to sack “disrespectful” staff

What kind of free speech is always and only “respectful”? Whatever the VC wants.

Peter Ridd has pointed out that Sydney Uni is trying to weasel its way around the new Freedom of Speech bill by declaring its undying support for free speech as long as it is respectful. So you can say anything you like as long as you don’t offend the VC. If an academic spots potential fraud, malpractice or corruption, they’ll have to find an inoffensive way to say it. How do you say “incompetent crook” politely?

This is a university which nurtured a play called “Kill Climate Deniers”. Sydney Uni has no respect for at least half of the tax payers who fund it. So I say fine, as long as Sydney Uni has the power to sack people that offend it, let the taxpayers have the right to sack Sydney University.

Until then, free speech is free speech. The  strategy of using vague, indeterminate  language like “respect” is straight out of the communist party playbookkeep ’em guessing and they shalt censor themselves.

All universities that don’t know what “Free Speech” is should henceforth raise their funding direct from the people who are willing to pay for Autocratic, Politically Correct Research. All the rest of us want real research.

The University of Cincinnati has all but sacked a professsor who used the term “chinese virus” in an email.

In many respects, unis will smother academic freedom

Peter Ridd, The Australian

The University of Sydney has treated Education Minister Alan Tudge with complete contempt within hours of the Higher Education Support Amendment (Freedom of Speech) Bill 2020 passing through parliament this month. It did so in the typically duplicitous manner we expect from our universities. It pretends to support the minister’s bill that allows academics to take part in contentious arguments, but then insists on a killer proviso — so long as the speech is “respectful”.

That is a huge problem for an academic who is accused by their university of disrespectful speech. Who will decide if the speech was respectful enough? The vice-chancellor?


So the problem is that, by insisting on respect, making contentious comments becomes like walking along the edge of a cliff on a foggy night. You can’t see the edge. The only option for an academic is not to say anything remotely contentious.

In other words, Sydney University just killed academic freedom of speech while pretending to support the minister’s new law.

Higher Education Support Amendment (Freedom of Speech) Bill 2020

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