Duncan is now calling upon the school to discipline the students who disrupted his talk and to fire the school’s associate dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion. The judge describes the associate dean’s intervention as a “bizarre therapy session from hell.”
The protest began when nearly a hundred Stanford Law School students disrupted Duncan’s remarks in violation of the university’s free speech policies. One source of the student’s ire was Duncan’s 2020 opinion where he refused to use a transgender sex offender’s preferred pronouns. The event got so out of hand that federal marshals had to escort Duncan from the building.
Videos of the event show how Tirien Steinbach, the school’s diversity dean, delivered a speech accusing the judge of causing “harm” and “tearing the fabric of this community.” While Steinbach reminded the students of the school’s free speech policies, she stood by as the protesting students heckled Duncan.
Through it all, Stanford Law School administrators did nothing to keep order or protect free speech, according to reports. Over 70 students emailed the school’s Federalist Society chapter asking them to cancel Duncan’s talk or move it to Zoom, instead of allowing the event to proceed.
This story is a reminder that law schools are increasingly becoming places where free speech is under attack. It is important that schools take steps to restore free speech, lest we see the rule of law descend into barbarism. Stand up for the First Amendment and demand that all voices be heard!