New York University professor calls for censoring 'harmful' speech

New York University professor Gabrielle Gambrell recently joined Dr. Phil, arguing that ‘there should be censorship’ of speech that is ‘harmful.’

When students and university administrators invoke words such as ‘harm’ or ‘hate,’ as Campus Reform has reported, they often do so in an attempt to censor political opinions.

New York University (NYU) professor Gabrielle Gambrell recently told Dr. Phil, a program that focuses “on mental health issues,” that “there should be censorship” of speech that is “harmful.” 

The host, Dr. Phil McGraw, introduced Gambrell as someone who “says hate speech and inappropriate behavior should be censored on social media.”

Gambrell added that she is “extremely in favor of the First Amendment,” which allows even the most objectionable speech, such as hate speech, according to the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE). 

Zachary Greenberg, a Senior Program Officer with FIRE, told Campus Reform, “Hateful, offensive, and distasteful speech remains fully protected by the First Amendment. There is no legally-recognized category of ‘hate speech’ in the United States, and international and academic definitions contain extremely vague terms that vary widely.”

“Offensiveness—like beauty—is in the eye of the beholder, which is why the First Amendment prohibits the government from punishing hateful expression,” he continued. 

[RELATED: Florida university restricts speech that creates an 'offensive' campus environment]

When students and university administrators invoke words such as “harm” or “hate,” as Campus Reform has reported, they often do so in an attempt to censor political opinions. 

At Central Connecticut State University, students demanded that the Turning Point USA (TPUSA) chapter be “monitored for disinformation” for planning a screening of Matt Walsh’s What is a Woman? documentary. 

Over 100 students signed an email that read, “This film is designed to cause harm to transgender people by promoting blatantly false information to reinforce a ‘grooming’ narrative, invalidate and denigrate the identities of transgender people, and to inspire hatred towards transgender people from viewers who may not be aware that the information they are receiving is both false and purposefully harmful.”

In an op-ed for Campus ReformHigher Education Fellow Rob Jenkins referenced another Matt Walsh event to argue that “[i]n most cases, the speech in question is not even hateful.”

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After a student at the University of Houston told an ABC affiliate that Walsh’s documentary is “hate speech,” Jenkins wrote, “Opinions can indeed be mean-spirited, but facts are by definition neutral."

“Thus, it’s not ‘hate speech’ to say—as Walsh and others are saying—that there are only two biological sexes: Extremely rare exceptions aside, you can either have an X and a Y chromosome, or you can have two X’s,” he continued. “That is a well-established scientific fact.”

Campus Reform contacted Gambrell, Dr. Phil, and NYU for comment. This article will be updated accordingly. 

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