Speech regulation has always been a controversial issue. We are supposed to be given the right to say anything we are capable of thinking of under our first amendment rights, but realistically some regulation will always be required. If anyone went around saying whatever they want in an attempt to aggravate others, there would be more issues than the protection of one's first amendment rights at hand. Eventually, hateful speech would bring forth more verbal abuse, and could easily escalate to physical violence. .
But first, let's go back a step and discuss how this whole topic came to be. There are three major incidents that happened on college campuses that brought this controversial issue to the public's attention. The first incident occurred at the University of Pennsylvania in 1993. According to the article written by Michael deCourcy Hinds, a reporter for the New York Times, she describes how a young man by the name of Eden Jacobowitz is being punished for calling a group of African American students "water buffalo ". In Jacobwitz's defense, he claimed that "water buffalo " was the English translation of the Hebrew word, behayma, which is defined as slob. The group of African American women who heard this term complained to the campus police which then lead to an investigation. At around the same time, 14,000 copies of the school newspaper was destroyed due disapproval of an opinion column that was believed to be used as an attack on racial preferences. The second incident occurred at the University of California, Riverside in 1993. In the article by Ralph Farmmolino, a reporter for the Los Angeles Times, the fraternity Phi Kappa Sigma was being punished for having a printed t-shirt with "a beach scene with two Mexican caricatures, one in sombrero and serape, holding what appear to be beer bottles " as the image. Those who found the image offensive filed a complaint. The third incident occurred at the California Institute of Technology in 1995.