The House of Representatives adopted House Joint Resolution 0661 this week. Sponsored by Representative Richard Floyd (R-Chattanooga), the resolution originally condemned UT administrators for allowing sex week to occur on the UTK campus. It was later amended by legislators to specifically address the event’s organizers.
Rep. Floyd’s concerns were highlighted during his presentation on the House floor: “[To] all my colleagues here, I support first amendment rights. I may not like what you say, but I will stand with you and defend with you your right to say it. But you don’t have a right to drag the UTK Brand, the thousands of students at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and the thousands of graduates from that institution through the mud.”
After some dialogue between members regarding the First Amendment speech rights of students and the various programs occurring at the week-long event, Republican Leader Gerald McCormick (R-Chattanooga) weighed in with concern over student fees being allocated to such programming.
House Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada (R-Franklin) added to Leader McCormick’s comments. “If [Sex Week] continues on the campus of UT there may be stronger actions that come from [the legislative] body,” he stated.
HJR 0661 was adopted by the House and will next head to the Senate for consideration. There are currently 32 legislators serving as co-prime sponsors of the measure.
In addition to the resolution, several other measures (SB1608, SB2493, and most recently SJR626) have been filed addressing the allocation and/or use of student fees.
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