Artist censorship: limiting freedom of speech

On Tuesday, Sept. 21, the Center for the Study of Ethics will be holding a panel discussion on artistic censorship and the 2010 Vancouver Olympics Winter Games.

The panel will include three guests: Raymond T. Grant, Mark Lewis and Don Sterling. They will be discussing the Vancouver Olympic Committee’s decision to make artists involved with the Olympic games sign waivers, stating they would not say anything damaging about the Olympics or their sponsors.

Grant was the former artistic director of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic Winter Games, and is the organizer of Tuesday’s event. He came with the topic to Dr. David Keller, Philosophy professor and the Center’s director, and Keller thought it was a great ethical issue for students to think about.

“Students should think about, under what conditions is it right to inhibit the freedom of speech?” Keller said. “Because we live in a democracy that values freedom of speech there is a question; ‘What are the limits of free speech?’”

Lewis is a former NBC sports executive and currently president of Jet Set Sports. Jet Set Sports is the leading provider of Olympic games hospitality packages and Olympic games event tickets to corporate clientele and the general public.

Sterling is the Vice President and Chief Development Officer for Operation Kids. He served as managing director of marketing for the Salt Lake Olympic Committee and was a former executive with the Massachusetts Sports & Film Partnership.

This event is free and open to the public. It will start at 10:00 a.m. and end at 11:15 a.m. in LI 120. The first half of the event will be given to the three panelists to speak, while the remainder of the time will be opened up for discussion and dialogue with the audience.

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