Seeking Justice, Seeking Truth: a Conversation with Nadine Strossen

Olivia Glunz and Nadine Strossen
Academic Freedom Alliance

Excerpt: The gold standard for academic freedom was laid out by the AAUP, the American Association of University Professors, in 1915 originally and then with some updates subsequently. The standard is basically a professional one; if a teacher or a scholar is manifestly, clearly incompetent—for instance, they’re falsifying evidence, engaging in plagiarism, or conducting demonstrably, undebatably shoddy research—this should certainly be a basis for discipline.

Recently, we’ve seen another problem of using pretextual bases to silence a professor. In cases like Joshua Katz’s, for instance, a professor is ostensibly punished for some alleged sexual impropriety when it’s very clear that the real reason the university wants to get rid of the professor is his unpopular ideas.