EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Former prof encourages students to 'speak out' as campuses crack down on speech

Downs offered students two specific pieces of advice for how to advance the free speech cause on campus.

Former UW-Madison Professor Donald Downs joined Campus Reform recently to discuss his new book on free speech.

Former University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Donald Downs sat down with Campus Reform’s Eduardo Neret recently to discuss his new book, Free Speech and Liberal Education: A Plea for Intellectual Diversity and Tolerance, which hits store shelves in February. 


”I do worry about the future of the country,” Downs said during an exclusive interview with Campus Reform. Downs recalled many firsthand experiences he had while he was a professor at UW-Madison, and said that, while he does worry about the state of free speech, the majority of students still believe in the concept of free speech. 

”But there’s a strong minority of students that don’t, and it’s been harder to resist them on campus than it used to be,” Downs said. 

”And that’s why you need to speak out and do challenge them in the most strategic way that you can.”

Downs also encouraged students to “speak out” so that their views are not “buried.” He offered another piece of advice for advancing free speech on campus. 

”You need to seek allies...it’s really important to seek out allies and build a kind of bandwagon of facts or a group of people you can rely on that take this message seriously. So you start building strength in numbers,” Downs said. 

[RELATED: POLL: Most young Americans support ‘hate speech’ exemption in First Amendment]

Watch the full interview below: 

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