As we covered yesterday, Ann Coulter has been forced to cancel her planned speech at UC Berkeley after university officials -- who previously tried to shut it down over security concerns -- could not guarantee the safety of the speaker or her audience. Coulter challenged the school to provide an "appropriate room" for her lecture, but administrators said they could not comply with the request due to the security challenges. Sponsoring student groups started backing away from the event amid threats of violence, and then the author and polemicist pulled the plug, too:
UPDATE: Conservative commentator Ann Coulter says she has canceled her speech planned for this week at UC Berkeley— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) April 26, 2017
Thus concludes a pathetic spectacle in which a torch-and-pitchforks mob successfully stamped out an event featuring someone with controversial and acerbic viewpoints. It's remarkable watching lefties on social media gloating over the cancellation (other liberals have been critical), mocking Coulter and the groups who invited her as cowardly "snowflakes" who can't take the heat. This is a perversion of truth. Conservative speakers and their supporters are standing down in the face of credible threats from bona fide fascistic silencers who are confronting and stifling speech they find objectionable with physical violence. Threatening or violating other people's literal safety in order to protect an emotional safe space is actual snowflakery, not the other way around. This is now the third time this has happened at Berkeley since February. If the university is incapable of safeguarding the rights of its students and guests, leaders in Washington should consider withholding federal funds from the school.
Succumbing to Heckler's Vetoes incentivizes further violence, threats and disruptions -- a lesson that local "anti-fascist" (a misnomer if there ever was one) radicals have learned quite well. This is not acceptable. But the trend of organized left-wing violence and mob action is spreading. Beyond the growing list of campus examples, DNC-linked activists deliberately fomented a riot in Chicago that led to the cancellation of a Trump rally over the summer, and Trump supporters have been beaten and assaulted at other campaign events. Just yesterday, a pack of leftists stormed the Heritage Foundation's headquarters in Washington, DC. And now there's this shameful development out of Oregon:
The annual 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade in East Portland has been canceled. The parade, which is the first sanctioned event of the Rose Festival season, was scheduled for Saturday, April 29. Organizers said the event was canceled "following threats of violence during the parade by multiple groups." The Multnomah County Republican Party (MCRP), whose members were going to march in the parade, said threats were made against their group. According to the Oregon GOP, organizers of the parade received an email saying that a group would take their own initiative to make sure the MCRP didn't march in the parade if organizers let them participate. “We will have two hundred or more people rush into the parade into the middle and drag and push those people out as we will not give one inch to groups who espouse hatred toward LGBT, immigrants, people of color or others,” the email reads in part. The email, which the Oregon GOP posted on its website, further reads, “You have seen how much power we have downtown and that the police cannot stop us from shutting down roads so please consider your decision wisely.” The sender of the email cites two organized Facebook events to show the seriousness of their demands. One of the Facebook events is associated with Direct Action Alliance, a group "organized in response to the rise of fascism in America."
These left-wing fascists then had the temerity to express disappointment that their own threats and thuggery caused organizers to call off the event altogether -- an annual community rose festival parade, I'll remind you, in which the local GOP chapter has participated for years. "We intended to stand between them and those who they wanted to intimidate. We intended to block out their hate and shut down their violence," a leftist militia leader said in a surreally Orwellian quote. They were going to "shut down" perceived hate, violence and intimidation through genuine hate, violence and intimidation -- but it's the Republicans' fault that parade organizers got spooked. In End of Discussion, we argued that the Left's bullying outrage SWAT teams are making America less free and fun. That is demonstrably true. Since the publication of the book, these ascendant goons, who seem to operate with impunity within liberal enclaves, are also literally making America less safe. Their disgraceful, un-American tactics must not stand. I'll leave you with a few of my efforts to swat down some weapons-grade false equivalence and stupidity related to the Berkeley outrage:
No, YAF/Coulter declining to put ppl in physical danger bc Cal can't protect students & guests =/= 'snowflakery.'— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) April 26, 2017
God, that's stupid.
Gobsmacked by argument that hey, YAF/Coulter ultimately canceled this, not Berkeley.— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) April 26, 2017
Yeah, under extreme duress & violent threats. Sheesh!