A new safe dialogue policy will be put in place at Northwest soon. This policy states that any event that breaks any regulations or disrupts the university can be shut down.
Essentially, this says that anything that someone may find mildly disrupting or offensive can be reported and shut down.
While this is a good measure to ensure the safety and well being of students here, we can see some issues with it. The policy itself can be very good if it is used properly and not just because something slightly offends someone.
SAC brings a comedian each year and most of the time, these comedians come with offensive jokes and language. If they have to follow the safe dialogue policy, no comedian will want to come to Northwest again. If they do, they will have to censor themselves incredibly.
For example, the SAC fall concert featuring We The Kings last year was threatened. While some people were hesitant to attend, the concert still took place and there were no problems at all.
If the policy would have been in effect last year during this event, we would not have had that concert and a lot of people would be disappointed.
We also have to wonder who can define what is considered harassment. If someone gets denied what they want out of a group, can they then go and say that certain group is threatening and have those events shut down? This is where it becomes an issue.
Events could be censored, and while this can be a good thing, we can also see the events just becoming boring and mundane.
Concerts already have enough rules to make them safe, but add this policy, and we can see some major issues. Some students will definitely not want to come because of extreme rules and censorship.
The policy is good, and we do believe it can protect a lot of people. Northwest always does a great job of keeping all events open to anyone who wants to be involved. Add this policy and we can guarantee we will see very few problems in the future.
But there is always something that makes us wonder just how effective this can be.
This policy is good for the safety of Northwest students, but we do have to wonder just how far some people will take it and if some people will abuse their power to have events shut down just because they say so.