by Jeremy Leaming
The state that gave the country one of the harshest anti-immigrant laws, spurring an even nastier measure, the one Alabama produced, is now contemplating a sweeping bill aimed at curtailing free speech at the state’s public schools and universities.
As The Daily Agenda’s Anthony Badami reports the Arizona state senate is considering SB 1467 “that would require schools and universities to refrain from engaging in ‘speech or conduct that would violate the standards adopted by the federal communications commission concerning obscenity, indecency and profanity if that speech or conduct were broadcast on television or radio.’”
Badami notes that such a measure if adopted could jeopardize teaching literature or history “that include offensive, derogatory, and/or lewd language, creating a special difficulty for the examination of free speech/obscenity cases, esp. in constitutional law courses.” The bill, if enacted, could, as Badami correctly notes, make it incredibly thorny for educators to teach certain works of fiction, say D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover.
The Republic, a Phoenix daily, reports that the bill is supported by Republican state lawmakers who want to “require teachers to limit their speech to words that comply with the Federal Communications Commission regulations on what can be said on TV or radio.”