Purdue University Northwest administrators have reportedly threatened to expel a student for his posts on social media, leading him to claim that his First Amendment right to free speech is under attack.
The student, Joshua Nash, told The College Fix that the post that got him into trouble was most likely a controversial one that he wrote criticizing the Black Lives Matter movement.
In the post, which has since been removed from Facebook, he said: “Black Lives Matter is trash because they do not really care about black lives. They simply care about making money and disrupting events for dead people.”
Nash said the comment was reported to Facebook and his account was suspended for 30 days.
Last week he received a letter from the Director of Student Assistance, Leadership, and Conduct Andrew Pettee that asked him to attend an administrative meeting “regarding alleged comments that you made on Facebook.”
Nash claims he called a campus official to ask for more information about the summons, when he was told that his social media posts could lead to his expulsion.
“[I’m] saddened that a public university would threaten a student with expulsion, something that could ruin their life, because they dared express their opinions on a private social media network,” he told The College Fix.
Nash, who describes himself as a gay conservative Christian and a Trump supporter, has reported receiving online threats and harassment from other students, including one who called him a “dirt racist conservative scumbag,” “bigot,” and “a disgrace to the LGBT movement.”
Robby Soave, associate editor at Reason.com said, “Purdue University Northwest is a public university: administrators don’t get to punish students for speaking their minds, even if they really don’t like what the students have to say. Whether or not Black Lives Matter is an effective or intellectually honest movement is an important public policy question deserving of healthy debate at a university campus.”
The College Fix reported that Nash will attend the administrative meeting in August with an attorney.