Welcome to Chapel Hill, Dr. Carol Folt

As an alumn, I am pretty excited to have a woman chancellor at UNC. I also like that she's an environmental scientist. I'm always wary of folks without strong roots in the community, but Dr. Folt has a lot of potential.

What do y'all think?

The Rise and Fall of the North Carolina Speaker Ban Law

Student opposition to North Carolina’s 1963 Speaker Ban Law will be the subject of the annual Gladys Hall Coates University History Lecture Thursday, April 11, at the Wilson Special Collections Library.

Former UNC student body president Robert Spearman (’65) will discuss the controversial law that barred certain individuals from speaking on campus. Known members of the Communist Party, those who advocated the overthrow of the federal or state government, and those who pleaded the Fifth Amendment when questioned about communist or subversive activities were all prohibited from speaking at state-supported campuses.

The 5:30 p.m. lecture, sponsored by the North Carolina Collection and University Archives and Records Management Services, is free and open to the public.

The passage of the Speaker Ban Law fifty years ago drew almost immediate reaction from students and faculty, who protested that the law infringed on their rights to free speech. Students invited banned speakers to address their classmates from the sidewalk on Franklin Street and eventually initiated a lawsuit in federal court.

Spearman, now an attorney for a Raleigh law firm, testified before a state commission tasked with revising the law, which was eventually overturned in 1968.

Prior to the lecture, attendees can view the North Carolina Collection Gallery exhibition A Right to Speak and to Hear: Academic Freedom and Free Expression at UNC beginning at 5 p.m.

The exhibition uses original letters, documents, and photographs to examine the University’s long history of free speech controversies from the nineteenth century to the present.

The exhibition runs through June 2, 2013.


Thursday, April 11, 2013 - 5:00pm


Pleasants Family Assembly Room, Louis Round Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill

Safety, Image, and Undergraduates: What is the community's role?

News is breaking today that Landen Gambill, a UNC sophomore involved in the outstanding complaint against the University, could potentially face expulsion by the UNC Honor Court because she has allegedly "intimidated" her rapist and "adversely" affected his life. This development has already attracted (more) bad national press coverage for UNC.

This headline comes on the heels of news from the Daily Tar Heel that UNC junior Stedman Gage was found dead late Friday night at his off-campus residence. The cause of death has not yet been released by police. Gage is the fourth UNC student to unexpectedly die this academic year.

Though different in nature, both of these issues negatively affect the image of UNC and, by extension, our town and community at large. Perhaps the issue of how the Honor Court conducts its affairs is an internal matter to students and University administrators -- but I'm not so sure. If the University community decides that a victim of sexual assault is not welcome -- and is, in fact, in violation of its community standard -- does that not also reflect that the Chapel Hill community at large is also unwelcoming and unconcerned with issues of this nature?

The DTH: Still standing by their endorsement?

The Daily Tar Heel has another editorial today criticizing Governor Pat McCrory for his remarks about education in last night's state of the state address.

The DTH is right to criticize McCrory -- his remarks were wrong and show that he's learned nothing from his recent debacle concerning his views on liberal arts education.

However, I'm still waiting for the DTH to directly address their endorsement of McCrory in the fall. They've said in a previous editorial criticizing the governor:

If the plans for higher education McCrory advocated during his campaign are ultimately going to come down to a gutting of the University, then this editorial board regrets having given him its endorsement.

But this isn't a full retraction of their endorsement. It's sidestepping the fact that they endorsed a candidate -- and actively encouraged students to vote for a candidate -- who is directly opposed to what most students at UNC-Chapel Hill stand for with regards to higher education. 

Holden Thorp to become provost at Washington University in St. Louis



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