Little opposition to UNLV hate crimes policy

There apparently was so little opposition Thursday to a once-controversial UNLV hate crimes policy that the leader of the committee that ordered the policy to be written in the first place practically had to beg for naysayers.

"Anyone?" said university system Regent Cedric Crear, vice chairman of the governing Board of Regents Cultural Diversity and Security Committee.

No one spoke.

Come on, he said, noting that he didn’t want to be accused of not seeking input.

And so the student body president, Adam Cronis, got up and said he didn’t have much of a problem with the policy now, and in fact he didn’t have a problem with the old one.

Then a lone professor came to the podium, explaining that he didn’t really have a problem with the policy either.

No one, in fact, spoke against the policy, which has been substantially revised from a draft that came out several weeks ago.

The draft included a section on so-called "bias incidents" that inflamed free speech advocates. They contended that it would stifle speech. The portion was scrapped — for now.

Christine Clark, UNLV’s Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion, who was largely responsible for the initial policy, said the issue of bias would likely be revisited once faculty return for the fall semester.

The Board last year ordered all the state’s colleges and universities to enact policies that punish and prevent hate crimes.

The committee heard a review of the policy Thursday, but did not take action. That decision is entirely up to UNLV President David Ashley, who said the policy will go into effect June 30.

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