Shapiro: Alt-right 'has no grounding in reality'
5:00 p.m. (Pacific): Antifa gets itself whipped into a frenzy...
A video shows Antifa protesters getting themselves riled up for Ben Shapiro’s speech at the University of California-Berkeley, which is co-sponsored by organizations such as Young Americans for Freedom and the College Republicans, with one female demonstrator vocalizing that she and her fellow comrades must resist the “fascist America.”
“The world is watching what we do today; that we stand up outside of the norms of protest, of what they tell us to do,” she shouted through a megaphone. “And raise our voices.”
“The very nature of the world, of humanity, of the planet is at stake. And we cannot allow police [who] have set up barriers,” she continued, before cutting out, calling Shapiro a fascist.
Meanwhile, Campus Reform correspondent Naweed Thamas reports that police have erected barricades around the venue where Shapiro is speaking, and helicopters are circling overhead.
5:21 p.m.: Reports of first arrest
One person has reportedly been arrested ahead of Ben Shapiro’s speech on Thursday evening. The picture of the arrest has surfaced on Twitter, and shows a woman being pressed against a van by the local police.
The arrest appeared to be peaceful.
6:30 p.m.: Police announce more arrests
The Berkeley Police Department announced that it had already made three arrests “banned within the zone” Shapiro was set to speak in.
All three subjects were arrested for “carrying weapons” in a prohibited area.
According to a city press release, officers are checking for at least 25 different potentially lethal weapons, including “bricks,” “ice picks,” and “dynamite."
6:53 p.m. Berkeley police publicizes protesters
The City of Berkeley Police Department is publicizing each arrest it has made thus far7 on its twitter page.
So far, the Department has identified Hannah Benjamin, 20 years old, as among the first to be arrested for “carrying a banned weapon.”
Additionally, 44 year old Sarah Roark was arrested for carrying a prohibited weapon near campus.
7:07 p.m. Vandals say ‘f*ck’ new chancellor
Carol Christ recently replaced Nicholas Dirks as chancellor of the elite institution, and within her first few weeks on the job she is already facing backlash from liberal students.
According to images obtained by Campus Reform, students graffitied “f*ck Carol Christ” and “we don’t want your racist hate” on walls outside of the auditorium where Shapiro was set to speak.
7:30 p.m. Shapiro applauds police; commends audience
"Thank you to the police," Shapiro said to enthusiastic applause. "You did an amazing job!"
Shapiro also praised the audience members for "braving the slings and arrows" of the protesters by "entering a building."
7:45: Shapiro: Alt-right 'has no grounding in reality'
Ben Shapiro roundly denounced the alt-right, saying they must "have a screw loose" and alleging that their worldview "has no grounding in reality."
8:00: All's quiet on the Berkeley front...for now
As Ben Shapiro enters the Q&A phase of his event, Campus Reform's correspondents report that the situation outside the venue remains "peaceful," with small groups of protesters chanting.
Berkeley Police, however, reports that it is monitoring a "march through South Campus," warning travelers to expect "delays/interruptions."