University of California at Berkeley officials approved the invitation of Milo Yiannopoulos by Berkeley College Republicans on free speech grounds and only canceled it at the last hour when a hundred or so provocateurs dressed in black and wearing face masks arrived to turn a peaceful demonstration violent.
These were not UC students. President Trump should turn his ire to those universities that wouldn’t allow this man to speak by insisting that the sponsoring club pay an exorbitant security fee or for some other sketchy reason.
Despite a letter from 12 Berkeley professors requesting cancellation, the UC Berkeley administration insisted it would not disallow the talk.
“The University may not engage in prior restraint of speech based on concern that a speaker’s message may trigger disruptions,” wrote Associate Chancellor Nils Gilman in response to the letter. “We also note that at the heart of these constitutional rules is the objective of preventing opponents from effectively shutting down expressive activity that they don’t like, the ‘heckler’s veto’ as it is often known.”
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That was on Jan. 10, weeks before the scheduled visit. Typically, Trump became apoplectic about the UC Berkeley protests and cancellation without looking into the background or details of what really happened.
Bob Turner, Clovis