October 21, 2019  |  7-9pm, Glenn Miller Ballroom, University of Colorado  Boulder, “Should The World Radically Restrict Fossil Fuel Use To Prevent Climate Change?”


April 25, 2019  |  7-10pm, Math 100, University of Colorado, Boulder, Not in Vein, The Opioid Crisis, Film Screening

December 9, 2018  |  7-9pm, Hellems 252, CU Boulder Student Club Meeting

November 11, 2018  |  7-9pm, Hellems 252, CU Boulder Student Club Meeting

October 21, 2018  |  6-9pm, Chem 140, Free to Be Candidate Debate

The nonpartisan Free to Be at CU student organization hosted an Oct. 21 forum to give CU Boulder students, faculty, staff and the public opportunities to engage in productive discussions with each other and several candidates running for office in Colorado.


Debaters included attorney general candidates Phil Weiser and George Brauchler; secretary of state candidates Wayne Williams and Jena Griswold; regent-at-large candidates Ken Montera and Lesley Smith; treasurer candidates Dave Young and Brian Watson; and Peter Yu, who ran for Congress in the second congressional district against Joe Neguse, who was not available to participate in the debate. The forum was moderated by Elizabeth Stapp, senior instructor with the CU Boulder Leeds School of Business.

April 2, 2018  |   Globalism vs Nationalism Debate Series featuring Vicente Fox & Nigel Farage, Macky Auditorium, Boulder, CO

The Free to Be Coalition launched by hosting their first meeting of the Free to Be Student Debate Club at CU Boulder. They also joined forces with the Steamboat Institute to host Nigel Farage, the former leader of the UK Independence Party and mastermind behind Brexit, and Vicente Fox, the former President of Mexico who debated Globalism vs Nationalism at four Universities nationwide.


“We were honored that Vicente Fox and Nigel Farage, two transformative and opinionated figures from both sides of the political spectrum came together and demonstrated by example the meaning of respectful debate and the right for all to listen, agree or disagree on views which differ from their own”.


Nigel Farage, whose voice rang out across the UK in defense of liberty and the plight of ordinary citizens, said “free and open debate on subjects like the European Union has disappeared in British universities. Critical thinking has gone out of the window. Increasingly, our young people are taught that one side of the argument is correct, and the other side and its proponents are evil.”


“Something drastic needs to be done to counter this. I admire the efforts of the Free to Be Coalition in addressing these issues surrounding the threats to free speech on university campuses.” Farage added.


Former President of Mexico Vicente Fox Quesada stated, “The ideas put forth by the Free to Be Coalition to initiate discussion and debate on two sides of critical issues facing the world is both timely and important given the environment on college campuses today. It is essential for students to listen to differing thoughts and opinions and exercise their rights to express these opinions openly. In this Land of the Free where individual rights should be respected, initiatives such as these that foster open debate help teach students how to engage in civil discourse.”


“Attempts to curtail free speech on campuses continues to threaten academic freedom. The Free to Be Coalition will be on the front lines of defending academic liberty on campus. Our efforts will provide the opportunity for both students and the community to listen to difference of opinions in a civil manner, in order to freely form their own conclusions on these oftentimes contentious issues.”


“The absence of diversity of thought and intolerance of opposing views are major obstacles in the road to academic freedom. The Free to Be Coalition aims to expose students to considering alternate points of view and ensuring their rights to free speech.” 


The debates took place at the University of Colorado Boulder, UCCS, University of Maryland, College Park and Lafayette College in early April. The debate series is one initiative of many that the Free to Be Coalition is initiating to drive ideological diversity and protect free speech on college campuses. Other efforts include the Free to Be Student Debate Club, a Free to Be Higher Ed Leadership Roundtable this Fall, a “How to Free Speech” student marketing effort and a technology option for students to share stories and ideas on free speech and intellectual diversity.

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