Author and controversialist Ann Coulter plans to go ahead with her scheduled speaking event at the University of California, Berkeley despite reports on Wednesday that the university had canceled the April 27 event over “security concerns.”
Earlier this year, the campus that was synonymous with campus unrest in the 1960s, was again the scene of unrest when black-clad members of the far-left “Antifa” movement rioted on campus and destroyed university property while protesting an appearance by Milo Yiannopoulos. Over the weekend, leftists and supporters of Donald Trump resorted to brawling and fisticuffs in the city of Berkeley.
UC Berkeley Vice Chancellor Scott Biddy and Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Stephen Sutton wrote to campus student Republicans, who had invited Coulter, that the speech was canceled. However, the missive said that UC Berkeley will aid the Republicans to find another date for Coulter to speak. Biddy and Sutton wrote that campus police have fielded “currently active security threats,” which may compromise Coulter’s safety and event attendees.
The Young America’s Foundation, a sponsor of the event, told the Washington Examiner that Coulter wants to go ahead with the event despite security fears. Coulter has agreed to the university’s requirements, which included having her speech during afternoon hours and that the event be limited to students. The location will not be announced until nearly the time of the event in order to preclude protests against it.
Coulter issued two requirements for her safety:
1) That the chancellor of the university request that the chief of police of Oakland refrain from standing down his officers while ignoring rioters. In the past, the Oakland police chief has been accused of the practice, thus allowing leftists to shut down conservative speakers.
2) UC-Berkeley must announce in advance that students engaged in violence or heckling, for example, will be expelled. “If Berkeley wants to have free speech, it can have it,” said Coulter.