- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 25, 2007


A federal judge in Philadelphia has issued a permanent injunction against Temple University’s former speech code policy and also rejected Temple’s attempts to dismiss an accusation that the school withheld a master’s degree from an Army National Guard member because of his political views.

“This is an important victory for free speech on campus,” said David French, senior counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund and director of ADF’s Center for Academic Freedom, which filed the federal lawsuit on behalf of Temple graduate student Christian DeJohn.

On Thursday, the court rejected Temple’s argument that its old speech code, which was changed just before the summary judgment deadline in the case, was constitutionally justified, Mr. French said. The court also rejected the university’s attempt to dismiss Mr. DeJohn’s claim that school officials retaliated against him for expressing displeasure at anti-war messages sent to him by professors while he served overseas as a sergeant in the Pennsylvania National Guard.

The court set an April 25 trial date for Mr. DeJohn’s suit charging that the university withheld his degree in retaliation.

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