Thursday, September 14, 2017

Bannon, Yiannopoulos plan to speak at ‘Free Speech Week’ at UC-Berkeley

But the university is looking at excuses to ban them

Former White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon, writer Milo Yiannopoulos and other provocative figures are expected to speak at the University of California at Berkeley later this month at a “Free Speech Week” planned by a conservative student group.

The Berkeley Patriot, a student group, invited Yiannopoulos and the others in a bid to ensure that a wide range of viewpoints could be heard after controversial speakers sparked protests and cancellations on campus last semester.

But a university official warned that administrators do not have the information they need to guarantee security for the events.

In February, about 150 masked extremists threaded into a large, peaceful protest of a planned speech by Yiannopoulos, smashing windows, starting fires and throwing rocks. University police shut down the event, leading President Trump to lash out at the school on social media. “If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view — NO FEDERAL FUNDS?” he tweeted.

It was a sign of things to come, as protesters from the far right and far left confronted one another at events in Berkeley and on campus and as the university worked to provide security and faced criticism from some that the school was censoring its speakers.

The school, emblematic as both a left-leaning campus and the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement of the 1960s, provides a symbolic and literal backdrop for fights about political correctness, hate speech, academic freedom, the First Amendment and the Trump administration.

A leader with the Berkeley Patriot did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday afternoon.

University spokesman Dan Mogulof said in a statement Tuesday that both Bannon and Yiannopoulos have announced they will speak but the university does not yet have a complete list of confirmed speakers.

He noted that “some of the proposed events are being planned for indoor venues that have specific security and procedural requirements. We have asked the student group to meet those requirements and have informed them in writing that critical deadlines are fast approaching.



Bird of Paradise said...

U.C. Berkeley needs to be banned entirely banned lets raize the whole rotten place to the ground plant to grass install a few statues of Robert E. Lee and Columbus guard them day and night(Shoot the scum who try to vandalize them)and lets smash the Quetzalcoatyle idiol in Southern California after all its a false idiol of a pagan religion that sacrificed thousands of innocents to their false gods they worshipped

Anonymous said...

In the USA EVERY week should be free speech week.
That should obviously be especially true at Universities.
The fact that events like this are even noteworthy is a sad indictment on the state of freedom in the world at the moment.