To understand the core of the free-speech challenge in this country, consider the case of a hypothetical young woman named Sarah. In college, Sarah is a conservative activist. She’s pro-life, supports traditional marriage, and belongs to a Christian student club. Her free speech infuriates professors and other students, so the administration cracks down. It defunds her student club, forces her political activism into narrow, so-called free-speech zones, and reminds her to comply with the university’s tolerance policies.
What does Sarah do? She sues the school, she wins, and the school pays her attorneys’ fees. The judge expands the free-speech zone to cover the whole campus and strikes down the tolerance policy. The First Amendment wins.
Sarah graduates. A brilliant student, she gets a job at a Silicon Valley start-up and moves to California to start her new life. Just las they did in college, politics dominate her conversations, and within a week she gets into an argument with a colleague over whether Bruce Jenner is really a woman. The next morning, Sarah’s called into the HR department, given a stern warning for violating company policy, and told that if she can’t comply she’ll need to find another place to work.