Dear Chancellor Sederburg (firstname.lastname@example.org):
I am writing today to ask you to fire an emotionally volatile and ideologically bigoted administrator who is about to get you sued. Since you are only an interim chancellor and will soon be leaving you will not have to deal with the political fallout for firing this woman who happens to be a lesbian activist. But fire her you must. Please allow me to explain.
Last week, Ratio Christi (RC) and the College Republicans (CRs) decided to host a controversial event on campus. The event, which was called the Genocide Awareness Project (GAP), featured a display of pictures of aborted babies. The pictures on display and the literature passed out at the event were all core political speech protected by the First Amendment. Beforehand, both RC and the CRs went through all of the formal procedures necessary to hold their event on campus. That is when LGBTQIA Office Director Amy Schlag decided to intervene and stop the event from happening.
The effort to block the event began when someone created a fake Facebook account under the name “Margaret Sanger.” As you probably know, Sanger was a eugenicist, the founder of Planned Parenthood, and an occasional speaker at Ku Klux Klan rallies. She also appears to be a role model for Amy Schlag. In fact, Amy and her “wife” – UNCW Women’s Resource Center (WRC) director, Katie Peel – were the first two people Margaret Sanger “friended” with her fake Facebook account.
For the record, I support Amy Schlag’s right to form friendships with people who name themselves after eugenicists and speakers at Klan rallies. Of course, that assumes that the fake Margaret Sanger account was not Amy Schlag herself. That is a tenuous assumption, as you will soon learn. Just keep reading, please.
After the fake Margaret Sanger account was created – “Margaret Sanger” created a real Facebook event group. It was called “Stop GAP.” Note that the name of the group was not “Dialogue with GAP” or “Rebut Gap” or “Protest GAP.” It was named “Stop GAP” because the sole purpose of the event was to shut down the Genocide Awareness Project.
The plan for shutting down GAP was spelled out specifically. The participants would simply form a “human shield” in order to surround GAP so that no interested onlookers could carry on a conversation with the pro-lifers who were lawfully assembling on the UNCW campus.
It is difficult to top the hypocrisy of a bunch of “pro-choice” activists trying to physically restrain people from acting on the decision to have a conversation on the topic of a woman’s right to choose. But this is what they actually decided to do.
An important and obvious question to ask is whether a UNCW administrator, Amy Schlag, is the one who organized this effort to deprive UNCW students of their rights under the First Amendment. Of course, the circumstantial evidence suggests that either Schlag or Peel was responsible for creating the “Stop GAP” event. In fact, they were the only two “real” people associated with the fake Margaret Sanger account. But circumstantial evidence is not the same thing as direct proof.
Fortunately, because Amy Schlag is not a very cautious person, the question of who created the account is now moot. With remarkable boldness, Schlag went and promoted the “Stop GAP” event on her own personal Facebook page. So now her direct involvement in the effort to deprive UNCW students of their First Amendment rights is a settled matter. She is clearly guilty by her own admission.
As you may already know, I have been writing about First Amendment abuses on college campuses for 12 years – spanning about 1,000 columns. This marks the first time I have ever seen a college administrator a) actively join a public conspiracy to illegally deprive students of their First Amendment rights, and then b) actively promote the illegal action in an open and public manner.
Fortunately, we were able to find out about Schlag’s misconduct beforehand. We called the UNCW police and they intervened by putting the “Stop GAP” conspirators behind a barricade so they could not deprive others of their right to carry on a conversation. They were allowed to speak and to hold signs. They were just prevented from forming their “human shield.” In other words, the animals needed to be caged so the adults could have a dialogue.
Take a moment to consider the incredible waste of state resources associated with this embarrassing episode. UNCW paid one set of administrators to help set up an event. They paid another pair of administrators to try to tear it down. Then a bunch of salaried university police officers came along to clean up the mess. UNCW could probably let go of some of its police officers if there were fewer criminals in its administration.
Indeed, it is bad enough when the LGBTQIA Office co-sponsors events with pro-choice groups and refuses to co-sponsor events with pro-life groups (as I have written about in previous columns). Because Schlag’s office engages in viewpoint discrimination, it should be shut down. Furthermore, because she actively conspires to shut down the speech of students, she should be fired. She must be fired.
Unless you want to be sued again in federal court, I recommend you make a necessary personnel change. You have a ticking time bomb on your hands. The only question is whether you have the courage to defuse it.
Author's Note: I will be speaking at Harvard University on Thursday (April 16th) at 8 p.m. The event, "Abortion and Human Equality," will be held in Harvard Hall, Room 102.