The Nebraska GOP Doesn’t Believe In Free Speech

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The Nebraska GOP has objected to Creighton University having Bob Kerrey deliver the commencement address in May due to his support for women’s health care rights and choices. This is just so hypocritical on so many levels.

The Nebraska GOP apparently doesn’t want the Creighton community to hear from somebody whose views on women’s health care differ from those of the Catholic Church. What they don’t mention is that conservatives have crusaded for free speech rights on college campuses. They believe that somehow conservative views are being suppressed. Now these same people don’t want Creighton to hear from somebody with progressive views. The Nebraska GOP is all for free speech rights for those who agree with them but not others. Free speech for me and not for thee!

The spokesman for the Nebraska GOP made the laughable claim that the GOP is “pro-life.” This flies in the face of their repeated attempts to take away insurance from over 20 million people and their support for the Iraq war during the Bush Administration. The GOP would like you to forget this and counts on amnesia. The GOP never talks about Trump Care and the Iraq war anymore.

In my opinion, this attempt by the Nebraska GOP to suppress free speech rights is in retaliation for Creighton’s decision to exclude Joe Ricketts from an event honoring distinguished alumni. The Omaha Jesuit University yanked the honor in light of the numerous racist and Islamophobic emails that Ricketts sent out. At the time, the Rev. Daniel Hendrickson, the school president indicated that “Mr. Ricketts’ comments in personal emails do not reflect the values of our Jesuit, Catholic mission, including our focus on inclusiveness and diversity.”

As a proud Creighton alumni, I believe that former Senator Bob Kerrey is an excellent choice to address the new graduates. Kerrey is a war hero, successful businessman, former Governor and former two term Senator. Kerrey has served his state and country with distinction. He is a good role model for the Creighton graduates.

I would urge my alma mater to stand up to the pressure from the radical right and reject the GOP’s attempt to withdraw their invitation to Senator Kerrey. This is nothing more than a vindictive attempt by the Nebraska GOP to suppress free speech and to retaliate for Creighton’s justifiable response to Joe Ricketts’ disgusting emails. Creighton shouldn’t knuckle under to a hyper-partisan and hypocritical attack from the GOP.

I’m a trial lawyer, a Democratic activist and a sports fan.

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