Allen West Old School Patriot UC Berkeley

A Victory for Free Speech on Leftist Campuses

In Education, Front Page, US Constitution by Allen West

If there is one thing we do not have to debate, it is the existence of bias when it comes to free speech for constitutional conservatives on college and university campuses.

I would welcome anyone who wants to argue that point with me since I have firsthand experience. I have written about limited free speech on college campuses including the insidious “free speech zones” on a campus here in North Texas.

I remember when the world’s largest Christian university, Liberty University, had one far left progressive socialist Senator, Bernie Sanders, address its student body in a convocation address. Sen. Sanders was treated with respect and dignity and not forced into some back room, nor were there massive, violent, protests.

So, why is it that is the case when conservatives are invited to speak on liberal progressive campuses? Why do we endure the backhanded treatment, demands for security due to violent protests, and staged walkouts? Silly me, I was under the delusion that a college or university campus was a place for the free exchange of ideas and thoughts, open debate and intellectual discourse in order to advance knowledge. I suppose the progressive socialists are indeed the new “Know-Nothing Party” and refuse to learn anything besides their own dogma. I have previously written that there are three branches of rule for the progressive socialist left: courts, media, and academia. It is obvious, that our college and university campuses are the incubators for growing the next generation of little Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez clones.

It’s not just about the denigration for visiting speakers, it is the abhorrent way in which anyone daring to disagree with leftist dogma on campuses must face. That also includes conservative college professors and instructors who are deliberately ostracized, demeaned, and disparaged.

So, what are we to do? Well, we finally have a victory for free speech on leftist campuses. As reported by Young America’s Foundation (YAF),

“Following more than a year of hard-fought litigation in the hostile Ninth Circuit, Young America’s Foundation secured victory for free speech against the University of California, Berkeley. Through YAF’s lawsuit and subsequent settlement agreement executed over the weekend, UC Berkeley agreed to the following terms set by Young America’s Foundation:

1) Pay Young America’s Foundation $70,000.

2) Rescind the unconstitutional “high-profile speaker policy.”

3) Rescind the viewpoint-discriminatory security fee policy.

4) Abolish its heckler’s veto—protestors will no longer be able to shut down conservative expression.

This landmark victory for free expression means UC Berkeley can no longer wantonly treat conservative students as second-class members of its community while ignoring the guaranteed protections of the First Amendment.  

No longer can UC Berkeley place a 3:00 p.m. curfew on conservative speech. No longer can UC Berkeley ban advertisements for Young America’s Foundation-sponsored campus lectures. And no longer can UC Berkeley relegate conservative speakers to remote or inconvenient lecture halls on campus while giving leftist speakers access to preferred locations.  

Further, the policy that allowed Berkeley administrators to charge conservative students $20,000 for security to host Ben Shapiro—an amount three times greater than the fee charged to leftist students to host liberal Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor—is gone. YAF and UC Berkeley agreed to a fee schedule that treats all students equally. Unless students are handling money or serving alcohol at an event, the security fee will be zero.  

This win for free speech—a blow to radical Antifa mobs—means university facilities will be available to students on a first-come, first-served basis. No longer will the community’s reaction to speech be factored into decisions regarding lecture venues, meaning intolerant leftists cannot use the “heckler’s veto” to determine who is allowed to speak or where they’re permitted to appear.”

This is a huge victory and sets forth a very strong precedent against any more chicanery and antics emanating from these leftist campuses. I am one of the YAF speakers and have encountered these deplorable situations. I have spoken to the young conservative students on these campuses and their stories about their treatment are truly disgusting. Sure, we can disagree, but to try and destroy any ideological challenge on our college and university campuses is something none of us should accept or tolerate. And it is not just the pressure from peers, the angst that is targeted against conservative students by leftist professors and administration officials must end. I can tell you that my experience with the supposed “leadership” at St. Louis University was appalling, and we then wonder why these little leftist students are emboldened?

What we must continue to do is go “behind enemy lines” and challenge the very citadels of progressive socialism, our college and university campuses. We cannot cede over this key terrain to the left. And when we find instances of bias, censorship, it needs to be reported, YAF is a great outlet for such, and I am more than willing to expose campus censorship.

Parents, start following where these incidents are happening and stop sending your children to these schools. I have said and will continue to advocate for, a Hillsdale College in every state in the Union. We need to create more constitutional conservative academic institutions that provide our next generations with an education, not an indoctrination.

We need institutions of higher learning that will produce critical thinkers, not mindless lemmings who think the unemployment level is low because people are working two jobs. Or the latest folly, believing that the defense budget has $21T in annual fraud and waste. Yes, those are things that have come from the mouth of the famed leftist darling, who graduated from Boston University with a BS in Economics, Congresswoman-Elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Congratulations to Young America’s Foundation (YAF) for taking a stance, fighting back, and not accepting this deplorable status quo. Let’s do our part and seek to end the censorship of free speech on our American college and university campuses.

Be forewarned, this phenomenon is already creeping into our high schools, as students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in South Florida have witnessed.

[My latest book, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death is now available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and retailers nationwide!]