In a series of email blasts late this week, PR officials at the University of Northwestern (UNW) attempted to tamp down growing outrage over the school’s decision to not allow Star Parker to speak on campus (a story first broken here on the New Guard) as part of Young America’s Foundation’s nationwide campus lecture program.
It is clear the University of Northwestern is panicking, knowing they haven’t a leg to stand on in this argument if they are to continue claiming to be a pro-life community. Following the playbook of Grand Canyon University, and to an extent, that of the UC Berkeleys of the country, UNW’s latest statement is thick with doublespeak as they claim to be a pro-life campus and to not have an issue with Parker’s values, just her style.
But that’s not what their administrators have said previously. This is yet another case of what a school says and what a school does being two very different things.
The points laid out by UNW Public Relations are as ridiculous as their initial denial:
Perhaps more importantly, why does UNW think it can continue to misrepresent what happened, and what their own administrator said?
Specifically, the third point listed by UNW Public Relations states that the email “about Ms. Parker’s beliefs was taken completely out of context” and that Director of Student Programs Kayla Hoye “was referencing Ms. Parker’s communication style, not her personal beliefs of political viewpoints.”
To reiterate, Hoye said “we really don’t bring speakers who radically hold beliefs that UNW as a whole would not agree with” and “in the past UNW has stayed away from sensationalized speakers.”
UNW expects its community to believe that when they called out Parker’s “radically held beliefs,” they weren’t calling out her “personal beliefs.” Yet the latest statement again attacked Parker for her “communication style.”
The other points attempt to lay the blame for the public embarrassment UNW is now facing at the feet of the bold YAF activists on campus and Young America’s Foundation for contractual issues, despite never once contacting our office about their concerns as most schools do to work out any contract objections.
UNW again doubles down on their claims that “UNW’s decision not to sign the contract is not related to the speaker’s pro-life stance or political viewpoints,” despite the earlier email stating that the decision was based on exactly those grounds.
It is incredibly disappointing to see a Christian university—one that proclaims to support the same values that Young America’s Foundation and the University of Northwestern Young Americans for Freedom exist to advance—has chosen to attack us instead of partnering with us to promote the value of human life at all stages.
For additional information or to request an interview contact YAF Spokesman Spencer Brown via email@example.com or 800-872-1776.