Most of us would surely argue that military recruiters should be allowed to speak to students and make their case. If the students don?t like that message, fine. They?re certainly free to protest against the recruiters. They could carry signs, march, wear little ribbons in their hair.
Great. That?s free speech.
On the other hand, if the students want to see real examples of free speech being restricted, all they need to do is look around. Harvard?s president dares to opine that men and women might have some -- well -- different abilities. Big mistake. He?s not allowed to say that. Lawrence Summers has apologized repeatedly and will probably do so again.
It?s critical that we allow recruiters on campus because, even though some students may not want to hear from the military, the military needs them.
For example, it?s safe to assume that most law students were appalled by the abu Gharib prison scandal. Well, who?s going to prosecute the handful of soldiers accused of wrongdoing? Even better, who?s going to defend them? Military lawyers. And as long as our troops are in the field, we?ll see a growing need for highly qualified military lawyers.
This case is far from over. The Third Circuit has put a stay on its ruling, and the government?s solicitor general is taking this case to the highest court in the country. Legal experts expect the Supreme Court will decide this in the near future. When it does, the justices ought to allow the Solomon Amendment to stand.
In recent months we?ve watched people line up and risk life and limb to vote in Iraq and Afghanistan. These advances came about because of the United States military, and prove the benefits of freedom.
Our men and women are fighting, and dying, overseas. Let?s make sure they at least have the right to be heard on campus here at home.
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