There Be Crazy People Here

Yes, our Arizona legislature keeps cranking out the hits

In what has to be the most hilariously unconstitutional piece of legislation that I've seen in quite some time, senators in the Arizona state legislature have introduced a bill that would require all educational institutions in the state -- including state universities -- to suspend or fire professors who say or do things that aren't allowed on network TV. Yes, you read that right: at the same time the Supreme Court is poised to decide if FCC-imposed limits on "indecent" content in broadcast media are an anachronism from a bygone era, Arizona state legislators want to limit what college professors say and do to only what is fit for a Disney movie (excluding, of course, the Pirates of the Caribbeanfranchise. After all, those films are PG-13!).

Amazing.  I had thought the nominal reason for the FCC standards was because non-adults might watch TV and hear a bad word that they likely hear 20 times a day at school.  But college kids are generally adults.  This is just bizarre.

The Huffpo article did not mention the bill's sponsor, but how much do you want to be its a Conservative who has in the past lamented political correctness on campus?  [update: sponsors here]


  1. me:

    LOL. Well, it fits right in with the idea that an education is a dangerous thing, and that we shouldn't allow too much free speech in case the poor children get the wrong idea. Good thing the motherland is there to put limits on everything. Soviet Russia, here we come.

  2. Jens Fiederer:

    Given that this bill was referred to the ED committee, I have to conclude this had something to do with erectile dysfunction.

    2012-02-01 - Referred to Senate ED Committee
    2012-02-01 - Senate read second time
    2012-01-31 - Assigned to Senate RULES Committee
    2012-01-31 - Assigned to Senate ED Committee
    2012-01-31 - Introduced in Senate and read first time

  3. elambend:

    seriously, between this wackiness, sheriff joe and a venus-hot summer, I'm not sure why you live there

  4. me:

    *G* I am in the opposite camp. Having seen plenty of great shots on flickr, I really want to visit AZ some day, preferably soon (PNW winters are particularly miserable ;). The political climate makes me somewhat reluctant though... getting a local traffic ticket is enough of a nuisance already, but I'd dread getting shot for not thinking right out of state.

  5. Dale:

    The point of the proposed legislation is not to reduce the professors to saying and doing only what is fit for a Disney movie, but to making sure that they say and do only things that are politically correct. Or maybe I should say to making sure that they toe the party line.

  6. Mark:

    Hmm, usually in MSM and liberal/left blogs like Huffopo, the reason they leave out the name or party of the individual, is because the name is appended by a (D)

    Usually when the perp is a (R) that get a lot of attention.

    We shall find out I suppose.

  7. Mark:

    Senator Gould (R)
    Senator Antenori (R)
    Rep David Gowan (R)
    Rep Terri Proud (R)
    Rep Jack W. Harper (R)
    Rep Debbie Lesko (R)

    I stand corrected.

  8. John Moore:

    This sort of thing is probably a misguided reaction to the overwhelming capture of Academia by the left. Try finding a right wing professor (especially one who hasn't yet gotten tenure). They're rare.

    Still, it's pretty silly.

    I long ago concluded that Arizona was an entertaining place to live because of the wackiness of its politicos. Remember Ev? Joe is really entertaining, as long as you don't end up on his enemies list. I mean where else do you find a jail that has a store selling the pink underwear its inmates wear? Wonderful theater.

    As for this proposal, obviously it won't actually have any effect - it's just theater.

  9. kebko:

    So, if they shoot a student and drag his bloody corpse around the room, that will be ok, bit if they flip the class off while doing it, they're fired. I suppose that if the student yells "f&%@" when he's shot, he'll be in trouble too.

  10. Mark:


    If you are shot you are only allowed the Wilhelm Scream

  11. Dan from Gilbert:

    I moved to AZ recently from the Soviet Socialist Republic of Oregon precisely BECAUSE of the conservative politics (and great weather, of course.) So I absolutely LOVE it here. Hot summers and all.

    But this legislation (on the face of it, anyway) is the worse case of hypocrisy that I've seen in a long time. We need government to be silent, unless spoken to. This bill is asinine.

  12. ErisGuy:

    Without evening reading the bill, I'd say this was a great idea. If the profs don't like it, them cross the street to start their own university, free of government interference.