Simpson College is celebrating Constitution Week with a number of events this week. Simpson Student Media organized the Free Speech Wall in the Kent Campus Center on Constitution Day, Tuesday, October 17th.
Madison Boswell, photo editor of The Simpsonian newspaper, had this to say about continuing the tradition of the Free Speech Wall begun just last year:
“This is the second year we are doing the Free Speech Wall. We wanted to do something last year that let students get involved with Constitution Day, and as the media organization on campus, we focused on Free Speech…[It is] is something the Student Media staff feels passionately about, so it is an issue we like to bring to the campus’s attention.”
Students had the opportunity to write whatever they wanted on the wall while it was up in the Kent Center on Tuesday. Some students wrote inspiring quotes, others their thoughts on classes, and you also see some sports commentary. The purpose of the Free Speech Wall to is to show students that on this college campus, individuals are free to express themselves without penalty. In the invitation to write on the wall, Simpson Student Media included a note about being respectful of others:
“We ask that you think carefully and not use the wall to write libelous or obscene comments or those that needlessly insult others. But it is your right to do as you wish. We just ask that you keep in mind your responsibilities to this community and as an American.”
The first amendment of the constitution guarantees free speech, but individuals should be respectful when speaking out.
Other events on campus for Constitution Week included a lecture by Barbara Jones, director of the American Library Association’s Office of Intellectual Freedom and executive director of the Freedom to Read Foundation, and a Banned Book Reading.