College Suspends Student For A Semester Over Facebook Post

Facebook 3 SC College suspends student for a semester over Facebook post

A graduate student at New Jersey’s Montclair State University is facing a semester-long suspension and a permanent note on his transcript based on some Facebook comments not unlike what almost everyone has said at some point in his or her life.

The story began a few months before the suspension, when Joseph Aziz commented on the weight of a heckler at a Young Americans for Liberty event.

He has since apologized for the comments, explaining they were made out of frustration “with what I perceived as an attack on the speaker whose appearance my group sponsored.”

After the comments, which were posted on YouTube and included the allegation the heckler’s legs looked like a “pair of bleached hams” became public, school administrators disciplined Aziz and prohibited him from making any other social media comments about the heckler.

Recently, Aziz made a seemingly innocuous comment about the same individual on the page of a private Facebook group. When a group member sent the comment to the university, officials jumped at the chance to suspend him and forever sully his college transcript.

“Are you so focused on non-productive activities such as Facebook and ‘trolling’ that you have misplaced your priorities?” asks a college administrator in a letter to the student.

The college is relying on New Jersey’s rather strict anti-bullying “bill of rights,” though equating any impolite comment with bullying in need of punishment is completely outrageous.

At its worst, this appears to be nothing more than an inconsiderate act by a young man.

Unfortunately, his school wants to make sure a relatively minor lapse in judgment follows him for the rest of his life.

A molecular biology student, Aziz said “the ability to advance in my career is severely hindered without a graduate degree,” adding that a transfer to another school “is also difficult since a disciplinary suspension is noted on my transcript.”

We now live in a brave new world of constant government intrusion as individuals face punishment for private speech that should unquestionably be protected by the First Amendment.

Though I often criticize groups like the ACLU for actually arguing for limitations on our freedom, one civil liberties group has rightly come to the student’s defense.

“As an agency of the government, Montclair State has no power to order students not to discuss any topic or person on independent social media sites like Facebook,” argues an official with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.

So far, the school has shown no signs of reversing this foolish decision and likely won’t – at least without constant pressure from freedom-loving patriots fed up with this vast overreach of power.
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  1. Robert Evans says:

    Was Aziz correct about the heckler's legs? I think what he said was funny. These political correctness laws are driving people crazy.

    • Edwardkoziol says:

      Political correctness has gone awry.Things would be better if you could say what you mean without all the bull.

  2. Ok, so the kid is young and dumb, so stipulated. By why is it a university's business to get involved? Get over it, you elite snobs!

  3. Stop complaining LIBs. You voted for O and Democrat LIBs, so you get what you voted for. If you don't like it, do some thinking before you go into the booth the next time there is a vote, that is, if there is a next time. The government is getting so big, and O is getting so powerful, violating the Constitution every chance he gets, it would not surprise me if he pulls another fast one and halts the presidential voting process, perhaps due to some national emergency. Look at what Bloomberg did in NY…it is possible. So sorry LIBs, don't cry on my shoulder. It is time for you to taste your medicine.


  5. Edwardkoziol says:

    I guess the college never heard of freedom of speech.The heckler is protected but not Aziz,he must be a conservative.

  6. Seeks_the_truth says:

    Where is the ACLU on this? Any other group? I'd take this "school" to court and get everything I can!
    Just another reason I don't use my real name on a Facebook account. In fact, I don't use my real name on any of my accounts!
    If I'm going to be forced to have access to one for different reasons, they won't have my real name.

    • They can still track you through your ISP, unless your longing in from different Internet cafes each and everytime you log on.

      • Seeks_the_truth says:

        If you know what you're doing, there are easy ways around that. It's actually easier than you think.
        If they feel the need to hunt me down, I'm going to make them work for it.

  7. follydude says:

    … funny how so many gripe about the ACLU and, then, the ACLU is there for them.

  8. Hey, io, Adrian, io, hey, like, in NJ, io, ya know, ya can't say s$&t, io, so, be carefule what yaz say, cuz, io, listen cuz, if ya say sometin dat dey don't like, like io, I mean, ya know what I mean io, uh, dey will take yuz out back, io, an take take of buz-i-ness, io, like, io Adrian. Me an Tony S, weez like, uh, tight, so yuz betta watch, io, wat yaz say, oh, ya cud find ya selves, like uh, io, 6 foot unda wit, uh, kinda, io, cement shooz, io. Datz how we duz buz-i-ness in Joisey, io, ya gat it?

    BY-Da-Way, io is Eye-Talian fa "yo" in Spanish, ya gat it, io?

    • Tony S and Alessio,

      Cud yuz guts contact da University an giv dem an offa dey can't refuooz?

      • Io, Michael, does uuze guys tink aye am stupid o sumptin, io. Eye aint no crook…I have lived in Joisey fa 50 yeaze. Fa get about it. Uuze tink I wood, io, take some guy and tretten him wit an offa he could not refuze? What duz you tink, io, dat I was boin yestaday? Ca mon…io.

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