An appeals court has affirmed the speech rights of students at Clovis Community College, striking down a flyer policy that discriminated against conservatives.
WND had reported when the students won their initial battle with the California school.
There, Clovis Community College had imposed an unconstitutional speech code “that resulted in the suppression of conservative students’ viewpoints.” It was that agenda that was struck down by a federal judge, who ruled for three students from a chapter of Young Americans for Freedom who wanted to criticize authoritarianism on campus.
They did this by putting up posters listing the death tolls from communist regimes, which the school ordered taken down.
Judge Jennifer Thurston said, however, that the First Amendment doesn’t allow administrators to regulate the content of student speech by claiming that once students post a flyer, it suddenly “becomes” the college’s speech.
The court warned “a government entity cannot avoid constitutional requirements merely by declaring it can do so.”
WND is now on Trump’s Truth Social! Follow us @WNDNews
Now the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld that ruling.
The Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression, working on behalf of the students last year, had secured a preliminary injunction. Then after the judge’s decision, the school demanded the appeals court reverse the case decision.
“Clovis tried again to justify its censorship, but the court saw through its flawed arguments,” said FIRE attorney Daniel Ortner. “The panel’s decision shows what we’ve argued all along: Clovis’ flyer policy is overbroad, vague, and indefensible in a court of law.”
The school had insisted that students were not allowed to post anything with “inappropriate” or “offensive” language, “effectively giving Clovis administrators free reign to remove any flyers they disliked,” FIRE explained.
The appeals decision said, “What is ‘inappropriate’ or ‘offensive’ is a subjective determination, which would vary based on a college administrator’s personal beliefs.”
Emails obtained via a public records request revealed that soon after the flyers went up, a Clovis administrator wrote that he would “gladly” take the flyers down, following complaints about their content. The administrator also wrote that approving the flyers in the first place may have been a “mistake,” and that Clovis instead should have censored them under a policy that states, “Posters with inappropriate or offense [sic] language or themes are not permitted and will not be approved,” FIRE reported.
Clovis chief Lori Bennett then personally ordered their removal.
She then went about “inventing a brand new rule requiring flyers to double as club announcements.”
“If you need a reason, you can let them know that [we] agreed they aren’t club announcements,” Bennett wrote to Clovis staff. Clovis does not have a policy on the books that requires flyers to be club announcements. But with this excuse in hand, Clovis employees told student workers to remove the flyers.
The 9th Circuit found the school in violation of the First Amendment.
IMPORTANT NOTE: To their horror, America’s ruling elites failed to knock out Donald Trump during his four years as president via the fabricated Trump-Russia collusion scandal – conceived and funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign, as the Durham report proves – or through two circus-like impeachment trials. Later came “January 6,” a demonstration-turned-riot by Trump supporters who passionately believed, with good reason, that the recent election – and therefore their country – had just been stolen from them. Members of Congress now want to constitutionally bar Trump from again seeking public office for having instigated “an armed insurrection” (no protester was armed) against America.
Then in March, Trump was indicted in New York on 34 counts of falsifying business records, and in June, still more indictments were filed against Trump – 37 federal criminal charges related to his handling of classified documents. Honest legal experts not in league with the Biden administration openly classify these indictments as somewhere between frivolous and idiotic, not to mention grotesquely politically motivated.
The Deep State’s never-ending persecution of Donald Trump, as well as the incredible back story of the totalitarian agenda Trump’s persecutors are attempting to implement in America and why Trump represents a mortal threat to their nefarious designs – is the focus of the blockbuster July issue of WND’s critically acclaimed monthly Whistleblower magazine, titled “THE PERSECUTION OF DONALD TRUMP: Why the ruling elites loathe – and fear – the 45th president.”
For 25 years, WND has boldly brought you the news that really matters. If you appreciate our Christian journalists and their uniquely truthful reporting and analysis, please help us by becoming a WND Insider!
Content created by the WND News Center is available for re-publication without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact email@example.com.
This article was originally published by the WND News Center.