UCI is now right smack-dab in the middle of the Muslim cartoon controversy that has spread throughout the Middle East. I doubt you’ll be able to find a Danish pastry on campus if some of the student groups have their way.
It seems the UC Irvine Campus Republicans and a group called The United American Committee have decided to display the cartoons which depict the prophet Muhammad as a terrorist. The Muslim Student Union is equating the display of the cartoon as similar to what happened to the Jews during the Holocaust.
While the display of the cartoons may upset a group of students, the larger argument here is a group’s right to their First Amendment right to freedom of speech, but free speech does have limits. Additional questions on religious tolerance are also raised here. If the cartoons are being displayed with the purpose of causing a “thumb-your-nose” attitude towards Muslim students then the UCI Campus Republicans have crossed the line. If the groups organizing this panel discussion truly intend the display of the pictures to belong squarely in an academic discussion then there should be no issue with the display of the cartoon.
This is actually a great post to hear your response on the subject: Do the UCI Republicans truly intend on presenting the cartoon in an academic setting or do they intend to use it with harm? Additionally what limits, if any, should the First Amendment have when speech takes issues with competing religions/beliefs?