A new survey of students at Yale University shows that 16 percent of the students at Yale favor regulations restricting speech on the fancypants campus. That’s roughly 1 out of every 6 students.
At the same time, an impressive majority of undergraduate students at the Ivy League bastion support robust free speech.
The William F. Buckley, Jr. Program at Yale commissioned the survey, for which McLaughlin & Associates polled 872 Yale undergraduates in late April.
The results of the poll show that 16 percent of Yale’s elite students support “having speech codes to regulate speech for students and faculty” and 72 percent oppose such limitations on speech.
Yale students also support intellectual diversity by wide margins.
Over 80 percent of Yale’s undergrads agree with this statement: “Yale should always do its best to promote intellectual diversity and free speech by allowing a wide range of people with differing views and opinions to speak on campus.”
Just 5 percent of Yale’s students think, “Yale should forbid people from speaking on campus who have controversial views and opinions on issues like politics, race, religion or gender.”
However, this meager 5 percent of students appears to be limiting academic discourse. Over 40 percent of the students at Yale admit they are “not comfortable” expressing their opinions in class on issues ranging from politics to race to gender. Over half of Yale’s students say they feel “intimidated” about voicing their opinions in class.
Students also say the Yale’s faculty is bursting at the seams with political liberalism. Almost 90 percent of Yale’s students classify the faculty as “liberal.” Only 1 percent of students believe the faculty is “conservative.”
“The survey offers some good news about student attitudes toward free speech on Yale’s campus but there is still cause for concern,” Lauren Noble, founder and executive director of the Buckley Program, told The Daily Caller. “While 60 percent of students approve of the job Yale is doing promoting free speech, 66 percent of conservative students disapproved. The Buckley Program encourages university administrators to take steps to improve this situation.”
The ongoing issue of stifled speech at Yale bizarrely erupted in 2015 over statements made by two professors, Nicholas Christakis and Erika Christakis, who served as the directors of a residential college at Yale.
Erika Christakis had sent out an email before Halloween criticizing efforts at the school to censor Halloween costumes. This email sparked a massive backlash and calls for both professors to resign.
In early November 2015, Yale student Jerelyn Luther shrieked at Nicholas Christakis to “be quiet” as he tried to explain his position on tolerating Halloween costumes to a group of students. Luther called Christakis “disgusting” and said he “should not sleep at night.”
Yale should be a “safe space,” Luther said in her tirade. “Who the fuck hired you?”
Luther, who in fact served on a Yale committee which selected Christakis to direct the residential college, frantically moved to delete her online presence after the video went viral. Her LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook pages were deleted.
An investigation by TheDC showed that Luther comes from a relatively privileged background. (RELATED: Meet The Privileged Yale Student Who Shrieked At Her Professor)
Besides the obvious privilege inherent in being able to attend Yale, Luther also hails from the wealthy, low-crime city of Fairfield, Connecticut. Her family home isn’t luxurious but has an appraised value of more than $760,000. Her short (now apparently deleted) profile at The Yale Globalist described her as an avid traveler who wants to visit at least three-fourths of the world’s countries — a hobby that’s hardly available to the impoverished.
A year of tuition, fees and room and board at Yale costs $66,900.
Yale’s largely untaxed endowment of $25.4 billion is roughly equal to the entire annual gross-domestic product of El Salvador, a country of over 6.1 million people.
The undergraduate population at Yale is about 5,500 students.