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Berkeley Sued for Canceling Ann Coulter Speech
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Ann Coulter

Summary: Two conservative groups are suing Berkeley for not allowing appearances given by conservative speakers.

The hammer has been coming down on Berkeley for, what many feel is a suppression of conservation values. Author Ann Coulter was invited by groups to come speak at the University of California, Berkeley, but the school has since canceled her appearance, citing threatened violence as the reason. However, since this is not the first conservative minded speech the school has canceled, many groups feel that Berkeley is silencing the discussion of conservative ideas.


The two conservative groups, the Berkeley College Republicans, and the Young America’s Foundation have decided to fight back, suing the school of the restriction of conservative speech on campus. The groups filed a federal lawsuit in the Federal District Court in San Francisco together just days after Coulter’s appearance was canceled. She plans on coming anyway. The lawsuit states, “Berkeley promises its students an environment that promotes free debate and the free exchange of ideas.” That promise was breached “through the repressive actions of university administrators and campus police.”

The school claims that anarchist groups have threatened violence against her appearance, jeopardizing security on campus. There have been a number of clashes between right and left groups in recent months with even a few injuries reported.

Berkeley College Republicans are demanding the right to “bring speakers of its choosing to speak on campus.” They are also stating an entitlement to “unspecified monetary damages arising from the unconstitutional actions” of the school plus legal costs.

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University spokesman Dan Moguluf said, “Ann Coulter is welcome on this campus but at a time when we can provide a venue that law enforcement professionals believe to be protectable.” The school proposed a different date and time for her to come but the conservative group rejected the new date as it fell during the study week at the end of the term before finals.

Moguluf explained that the school has received “letters and threats” from people around the country stating “as individuals or part of a militia, they intend to come to the campus to support Ann Coulter. Our concerns have only grown.”

Berkeley College Republicans also noted in the lawsuit that they were forced to cancel another appearance from a conservative writer earlier this month. David Horowitz was supposed to speak but the school demanded his appearance take place in the afternoon at a location far from the center of campus.

The lawsuit accuses the school of restricting the time and place of their events for no logical reason, resulting in a “marginalization of the expression of conservative viewpoints.”

The most notable violence against a conservative speech this year was in February when right-wing journalist Milo Yiannopoulos was supposed to give a speech. Left extremists smashed windows of the building where the speech was supposed to take place, setting fires and storming the building. The estimated damages from their violence is around $100,000.

Do you think college campuses are suppressing the freedom of speech by conservative groups? Tell us in the comments below.

To learn more about violent protests, read these articles:




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