Milo posters vandalized at American University
American University students gave Milo Yiannopoulos a preview of the reception he can expect when he arrives on campus Thursday, tearing down and destroying posters promoting the speech.
Dan Savickas, Treasurer of the school’s Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) chapter, told Campus Reform that he noticed the vandalism on his way back from dinner Tuesday night, saying he was disappointed but not surprised, given the liberal leanings of most AU students.
Pictures provided to Campus Reform show two locations from which the flyers had been torn down, as well as torn-up fragments of the flyers littering the floor of a nearby hallway.
A chart outlining “Practices for Creating a More Inclusive AU” that hung adjacent to one of the YAL signs was left unmolested.
“I wasn't surprised at all, because this kind of thing on campus isn't new,” Savickas said, adding that YAL members were prepared to replace the signs immediately. “Any viewpoint that doesn't align with the popular view gets silenced and ridiculed.”
Nobody has yet come forward to take credit for the destruction of the flyers, but the defacement coincides with a demonstration being planned on Facebook to protest Yiannopoulos’ lecture as a show of opposition to his allegedly “hateful” words and ideas.
“Milo and his supporters in YAL seem to get a weird thrill from oppressing others and hiding like cowards under the first amendment [sic],” one user commented. “To all those with PTSD, to the trans people facing violence, to the feminists fighting for equality and equity, and anybody else who Milo and his supporters seem to use as scapegoats for their own insecurities; you're loved and cared for, and deserve so much better.”
“There is a difference between believing in free speech and believing in hate speech,” wrote another protest advocate. “I'm confused why students at our university are so content on going to hear this guy speak.”
Free speech supporters have also weighed in, but according to several indignant posts, most unsupportive comments have been removed.
Yiannopoulos has faced often-virulent opposition throughout his “Dangerous Faggot” campus speaking tour, such as rowdy protesters demanding that “free speech has got to go” at the University of Minnesota and Rutgers University students who smeared themselves with fake blood to make a statement that remains unclear.
“I don't think the leftists here have any intention of letting us hear what Milo has to say, any more than they want to let us keep up our ads,” Savickas told Campus Reform. “I'm fully expecting chaos tomorrow at the event, [but] I'm trusting that AU Police will keep it somewhat under control.”
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