Why mutual respect makes free speech better

In his July 20 op-ed featured in The Daily Princetonian, President Eisgruber writes:

When historians look back on 2020, they will undoubtedly see it as a year of great strife and important change. America’s national reckoning with racism, carried out amidst a deadly and still unfolding pandemic, has uncovered long simmering tensions and persistent injustices throughout the country.

Princeton has distinctive responsibilities as it contends with its own history, and seeks to improve itself, in this pivotal moment. As I argued in a lecture at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School last autumn, we are in an era when many people mistakenly treat free speech and inclusivity as competing values. Universities must nevertheless remain steadfastly devoted to both free speech and inclusivity. We need the benefit of multiple voices and perspectives, and we need real engagement among them.

Our ability to uphold these two ideals depends upon the University’s policies but rests ultimately upon shared commitment from faculty, staff, and students. Policies alone cannot produce the generative exchanges and real learning that are crucial to Princeton’s mission.

Read the op-ed in full here.