December 17, 1791, was one of the most monumental days in American history, as the First Amendment was adopted. This amendment guaranteed all American citizens five freedoms: the freedoms of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition. With these freedoms, we Americans are allowed to speak our mind about the government and other things that pertain to our well-being. They give us the freedom to practice whatever religion we choose, the freedom to publish what we want, the freedom to a…

Gov. Terry Branstad recently stated that Iowa State should speak with “one voice” and have “one mission” when it comes to agricultural research. Branstad’s comment identifies a political agenda that has constrained diverse research and open dialogue on our campus. His comment not only mistakes the mission of Iowa State to serve the people of Iowa and its core value of intellectual freedom, it implies that diverse and, perhaps, even dissenting ideas regarding agricultural research are not…

As president of Iowa State, it is my responsibility to lead the entire institution, to ensure the many elements of this complex organization work together to provide high quality education to students and to fulfill our responsibilities to Iowans. That was my promise to the Board of Regents when I accepted this position in September 2011, and it remains my promise today.

On Memorial Day 2012, I blogged that we should also remember our diplomats and non-military who work every day in dangerous places. Without them, we would have to use even more troops and force at greater cost as we conduct our foreign and national security policy.

The anti-Islamic film “Innocence of Muslims” was apparently produced by Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, believed to be a Coptic Christian who was convicted of bank fraud and identity theft in 2009 and placed on supervised probation for five years.

U.S. Rep. Steve King from Iowa’s 5th Congressional District recently claimed the promotion of the concept of multiculturalism will ultimately bring about the demise of the country as we know it. Speaking to supporters on Aug. 21, 2012, at a Le Mars town hall meeting, King conjured up a supposed deep and sinister plot to ensnare young and impressionable first-year college students into campus multicultural groups for the purpose of turning them into victims, which will convince them to wo…