David Hudson over at the First Amendment Center has published an informative analysis of the landscape for free speech following the Supreme Court’s decision in Garcetti v. Ceballos (2006). David writes:
One uncertainty is whether Garcetti will be applied with full force in academic settings. Even the majority of the Court recognized that “there is some argument that expression related to academic scholarship or classroom instruction implicates additional constitutional interests that are not fully accounted for by this Court’s customary employee-speech jurisprudence.” Whether academic freedom provides greater protection for university professors from the full reach of Garcetti remains an unsettled question.
The full ramifications of the Garcetti opinion have yet to realized, but its potential effect on FIRE’s work and academic freedom are far-reaching and troubling. Taken together with cases like Hosty v. Carter, there is reason for those of us who care about campus free speech to be concerned. We will certainly be keeping an eye on how the case law progresses.