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Let’s skip the Halloween free speech controversy this year

Oct 12, 2020 by AFP

October brings fall colors, the World Series — and campus debates about Halloween costumes. Casey Mattox, vice president for legal and judicial strategy at Americans for Prosperity, suggests that this year we give the latter a miss.

In a commentary piece for National Review, Casey notes:

Free speech advocates dread the holiday because we know that every year we will have to contend with another viral moment where someone’s bad attempt at a humorous costume rightfully offends not only some in attendance, but all of Twitter.

His modest proposal: Let’s stick to autumn leaves and postseason baseball.

And he offers some advice for students, administrators, the media, and the rest of us on how to accomplish that laudable goal.

You know that civil liberties are the solution to our uncivil times, not their cause. Sure, viral moments like these — when people use civil liberties in lamentable ways — will get outsized attention. But when you’re asked to judge the value of free speech by its use by that one 18-year-old kid? Let’s not.

Read the whole thing here. And read more about AFP’s efforts to safeguard free speech here and here.