A Psychologist Takes A Stand

Robert Fettgather
2 min readFeb 26, 2024

Robert Fettgather, Ph.D. is a counselor, educator, writer and activist residing in Grass Valley, California. He holds a doctorate in psychology and master degrees in both psychology and education. Robert Fettgather holds a specialist credential in learning handicapped and community college credentials in both learning and developmental disabilities.

Jordan Peterson, a Canadian psychologist and professor, has become a prominent figure in the discourse on free speech. Known for his unwavering commitment to open dialogue and expression, Peterson’s stance on free speech has ignited discussions on the balance between individual rights and societal norms. He is both praised and reviled.

Jordan Peterson’s defense of free speech is rooted in the belief that it is a fundamental right essential for the flourishing of a democratic society. He argues that the ability to express one’s ideas openly and engage in free and open debate is crucial for the pursuit of truth and the advancement of knowledge. Peterson contends that stifling free speech not only hinders intellectual growth but also undermines the very essence of a free and democratic society.

Peterson has been a vocal critic of policies and regulations that he perceives as encroachments on free speech, particularly those imposed by licensing boards and institutions. Such boards, often tasked with ensuring professional standards, can inadvertently restrict free expression by enforcing ideological conformity. Peterson’s concerns arise when these regulations extend beyond professional competence to dictate acceptable viewpoints, potentially creating a chilling effect on diverse perspectives within academic and professional spheres.

Peterson’s advocacy for free speech aligns with his broader concern for intellectual diversity. He contends that restricting certain viewpoints stifles creativity and impedes progress. Encouraging a marketplace of ideas, Peterson argues, allows for the exploration and refinement of perspectives, fostering a more robust and inclusive intellectual environment. Peterson’s critiques often extend to educational institutions, where he believes free speech is essential for the pursuit of knowledge. He argues that universities, as centers of learning, should prioritize the free exchange of ideas and resist the imposition of ideological conformity. This, he suggests, is critical for fostering critical thinking and preparing students for a world with diverse perspectives.

As we navigate these complexities, it is crucial to foster open and respectful dialogue to ensure that the principles of free speech endure and contribute to the flourishing of a vibrant and diverse intellectual landscape.



Robert Fettgather

Dr. Robert Fettgather holds a PhD in psychology, master’s degrees in psychology and special education, and a bachelor of arts in psychology.