Rohan Krishnan, a junior at Yale University and a Students For Liberty (SFL) Local Coordinator, has emerged as a passionate advocate for free speech and civil liberties, both on and off campus. His journey toward becoming a prominent voice in these realms began with his genuine interest in political beliefs and his desire to explore the importance of individual liberties. Rohan’s path took a decisive turn when he had the opportunity to intern for FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education), an organization known for its dedication to defending free speech on college campuses.
Through his internship, Rohan delved deeper into the significance of free speech and civil liberties, particularly focusing on the critical role they play in protecting individual rights and promoting open discourse. This experience heightened his awareness of the unique nature of these principles in the United States and the need to continually advocate for their preservation and support.
Inspired by his interactions with international students at Yale, Rohan decided to start the Voices of the World podcast that shed light on their experiences and the rights violations they had encountered in their home countries. He recognized the importance of sharing these stories within the Yale community, fostering understanding, and broadening perspectives on the significance of free speech and civil liberties.
Despite facing challenges and resistance on campus, Rohan remained steadfast in his commitment to upholding free speech principles. Together with his SFL chapter, he actively organized events and promoted open and transparent discourse, advocating for an environment where individuals could express their opinions without fear of reprisal or reputational damage.
Rohan’s engagement with SFL not only bolstered his comprehension but also amplified his influence. “My involvement with SFL has truly been transformative. It has deepened my understanding, amplified my voice, and empowered me to advocate for free speech and civil liberties,” said Rohan. “SFL has provided me with invaluable resources, including literature that has expanded my knowledge on these crucial issues. Connecting with like-minded individuals from different universities through SFL has been an enriching experience, offering a supportive network for the exchange of ideas and perspectives,” he concluded.
The impact of Rohan’s advocacy extends beyond his campus. His dedication to protecting free speech led to an invitation to participate in a documentary that examines the relevance of free speech on college campuses today. Rohan’s role in the documentary, directed by Ric Esther Bienstock, provides a platform for him to articulate the importance of free speech and challenge the notion that it is outdated or unnecessary.
Through his podcast, campus activism, and involvement in the documentary, Rohan has emerged as a dynamic leader, honing his public speaking skills, organizational management abilities, and unwavering commitment to preserving free speech. His passion, resilience, and dedication to civil liberties make him an inspiration to fellow students and a driving force behind the continued advocacy for free speech in the face of growing societal divisions.
As Rohan’s success story unfolds, his efforts contribute to a more inclusive, tolerant, and intellectually stimulating environment, fostering a culture where diverse viewpoints can be expressed, debated, and respected. With his determination and unwavering belief in the power of free speech, Rohan is shaping the future by championing the principles that underpin a freer world.
Written by Anastasiia Rusanova