FREE SPEECH — After strong protest from students,
faculty and alumni, Pomona College has withdrawn its ban of two pro-life students from campus, imposed last week after
they videotaped the question-and-answer session during a Planned
Parenthood representative's talk and asked her tough
questions about recent controversies, Christian Newswire reports.
members of the youth-led right-to-life advocacy group Live Action. They both attend Claremont McKenna College, part of the
Claremont College Consortium together with Pomona and three other
A hand-delivered letter from Pomona's Dean
of Women Marcelle Holmes notified the students of the ban, claiming
their videotaping had been "against college policy." But Daleiden,
President of Live Action's Claremont chapter and Director of Research
for the national organization, said Pomona never produced the specific
policy they said his group had violated, and that he and Kinneberg were
denied their due process rights under the Claremont Colleges' Policy on
"When alumni found out about this Orwellian
situation, they were outraged," explained Daleiden. "Pomona accused us
of conspiring to 'disrupt the proceedings, intimidate participants, and
chill the free exchange of ideas,'" Daleiden said. "But nothing could
be farther from the truth. We were entirely respectful when we asked
our questions — as our video shows."
In rescinding the ban, Pomona officials may have been influenced not only by campus community protests but by provisions of the Leonard Law, which gives students disciplined for speech that would be protected off campus the right to sueand collect attorneys fees if successfulto have the discipline withdrawn. That law applies to both public and private colleges and universities.