Last night, Young America’s Foundation sponsored a lecture with Robert Spencer as part of the Fred Allen Lecture Series. Yet again, the insecurity of leftist administrators and students was on full display as the fragile liberals at Stanford came to terms with the fact that a conservative was going to speak on their campus.
In the days leading up to the lecture, Stanford administrators erected numerous arbitrary hurdles to suppress the free speech of the students hosting Spencer, including blocking the public from attending, banning live streaming of the event, and more.
On the evening of Robert Spencer’s lecture, attendees were met with barricades and a heavy police presence. When YAF staff attempted to enter the lecture hall, they were removed and told by Stanford administrator Nancy Howe that since the event was being organized by the campus’s conservative club, members had to be on site for YAF to be allowed onsite.
That standard abruptly changed when the conservative students arrived. Despite previous assurances, the Stanford administration took charge of the event venue and prevented dozens of students and guests from entering the lecture hall. They also ejected an A/V crew that had showed up to film the lecture, stating it was not “approved.” Furthermore, they banned various media outlets from covering or even entering the venue. When YAF staff attempted to get clarification on the rules, administrators, including Howe, literally ran in the opposite direction.
Despite earlier attempts by Stanford to keep media from covering the event, a few outlets were able to make it into the lecture hall. Stanford administrators seemingly refused to eject them for fear of the blowback that would surely come from Stanford administrators kicking out local TV outlets.
Furthermore, according to campus security, officers had been told to “stand down,” if students decided to disrupt the lecture hall, only receiving permission to step in if a crime was being actively committed. This is in stark contrast to the Stanford policy that bans disruptions in lectures like the one that occurred last night.
About 20 minutes into Spencer’s lecture, a majority of the audience in the auditorium staged a walk out, unable to listen to even one conservative lecture. Despite the fact that there was a large group of Stanford students outside, hoping to get in, administrators refused to allow anyone else in the hall.
Stanford’s leftist administrators and students are either too scared they might hear a conservative idea they agree with, or too incompetent to place their own ideas up against a conservative’s in a public forum.