Faculty Senate talks ignorance and free speech


Ted Legatski, the Faculty Senate chair, addresses the Faculty Senate on free speech

By Caroline Love

TCU needs to take an active role against hatred and prejudice on campus, the Faculty Senate chair said Thursday.

Ted Legatski, the faculty senate chair, shared his personal opinion about the “Blood and Soil” posters outside Tandy Hall at the Faculty Senate meeting. He said confronting hatred requires calling it by its “proper” name: lies.

“The battle is not between good and evil,” Legatski said. “It is between truth and lies.”

Legastki said opposing hatred requires action.

“It is not enough to say hatred is not welcome at TCU,” he said. “We must actively oppose it.”

Legatski said TCU should take action to include open forum discussions and debates where students, faculty and staff could participate.

“We must be willing to engage the ignorant in open debate,” he said.   

The issue threatens free speech Legatski said, and other important academic principles, including “the search for knowledge and unbiased truth.” He said there isn’t any truth anyone considers unbiased.

“If we can’t agree on the facts, how can we expect to ever find common ground?” he said. “Without common ground, knowledge can’t advance.”

Chancellor Victor Boschini said at his town hall meeting Thursday that groups like “Blood and Soil” use college campuses to make their influence appear more significant.

“These groups don’t get that many members,” Boschini said. “They try to make it look like they’re everywhere, and really, it’s this one guy they hired.”

Boschini said TCU should lean toward free speech.

“Colleges and universities are one of the last places in America where that’s permitted,” he said. “The line should be drawn at hate speech or anything that might incite violence.”

Boschini added that he has not allowed speakers on campus because of this and that people threatening to sue doesn’t stop him from banning speakers.

“Get in line, you’re suit number 13 this week,” he said 

Legatski said it’s fortunate there hasn’t been any violence in response on campus.

“We walk a fine line in fulfilling our commitment to educate individuals to think and act as ethical leaders and responsible citizens in the global community,” he said. “We must continue to challenge the ignorance. Whenever and wherever we encounter it.”