Photo Credit: AlexiusHoratius

Following the University of Minnesota’s second-class treatment of conservative students, another alumnus has announced he’s yanking support for his alma mater over the school’s censorship of conservative students and their work to host Ben Shapiro last spring. This alumnus’ decision comes on the heels of another major donor’s decision to pull support in May.

“I will no longer donate money to the University of Minnesota during my lifetime or as a bequest at my death,” writes the 1975 graduate of the U of M’s Carlson School of Management (who wishes to remain anonymous) in a letter to outgoing University President Eric Kaler. “Instead, any donations or bequests that were intended for the University of Minnesota will be donated to Young America’s Foundation.”

The now-former supporter of the University of Minnesota notes that he has “questioned the political atmosphere” on campus for many years, finding it “disheartening.” But it was the school’s treatment of bold students working to bring Ben Shapiro’s conservative ideas to campus that made this alumnus decide enough was enough. Outlining his experience attending the lecture, he recalls firsthand the anti-conservative bias his alma mater exhibited leading up to the February 27 lecture, sponsored by Young America’s Foundation:

“I was fully aware of the difficulty YAF experienced in finding an adequate venue for the event. In my opinion, the University demonstrated a strong bias against a conservative message being presented to students on campus.”

 Furthermore, this alumnus experienced a senior employee of the University berating YAF spokesman Spencer Brown, over accusations made by the Foundation that have since been proven true by internal emails between top level administrators at the U of M obtained by Young America’s Foundation:

“Also, the night of the lecture I was a witness to a very unprofessional confrontation of a young YAF spokesman by a representative of the University. This YAF spokesman is a Minnesota native and was there with his mother. The University representative confronted the YAF spokesman while he was speaking with his mother and accused him of being a ‘pathological liar’ repeatedly. It was embarrassing for all in the vicinity of the confrontation. As a University Alumnus it was a further illustration of the bias I felt the University had demonstrated for a long time.”

In closing his letter to University President Eric Kaler, the anonymous alumnus adds that he hopes “the University re-evaluates itself and truly adopts a free speech policy with equal access for all political viewpoints.” Echoing Young America’s Foundation’s belief that intellectual diversity is key to higher education, the alumnus says, “I believe the University serves its students when speakers like Ben Shapiro are welcomed… The University demeans its mission when it mistreats or ignores conservative scholarship and conservative students.”

“This is now the second University of Minnesota alumnus who has come forward to withdraw financial support,” noted Young America’s Foundation Spokesman Spencer Brown. “What we’re seeing are alumni rightfully refusing to give back to the institutions that oppose and even censor their ideas. This patriotic alumnus should be applauded for his decision to hold his alma mater accountable for its anti-conservative and unconstitutional actions. It is because of freedom-minded supporters such as this that Young America’s Foundation is able to sue the University of Minnesota to ensure all students have the ability to exercise their First Amendment freedoms.”


For further information or to request an interview contact YAF Spokesman Spencer Brown via sbrown@yaf.org or 800-872-1776.

See here for more information on Young America’s Foundation’s lawsuit against the University of Minnesota.

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