After DePaul University allowed College Republicans to invite Gavin McInnes to speak last fall, the administration decided to ban McInnes from campus today. This decision came after the university apparently allotted $10,000 for the event and allowed the group to go into the final stages. The event was scheduled for May 30.
The administration justified the disinvitation because McInnes supposedly “supports violence” and because he associates with the Proud Boys and the Fraternal Order of Alt-Nights.
Here is the letter DePaul’s President Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider wrote to the student body:
Dear Members of the DePaul Community,
Last fall, DePaul granted permission to a student organization to host Canadian entertainer and provocateur Gavin McInnes. Since that time, we have observed with alarm his statements encouraging violence – in particular, violence aimed at protesters who disagree with his positions.
In discussing his recently formed group, the Proud Boys, with a news organization, he said the last step of the initiation process involves “a major fight for the cause. You get beat up, kick the crap out of an antifa.”
After clashes outside his February event at New York University, McInnes told his followers: “We’re the only ones fighting these guys and I want you to fight them, too. It’s fun. When they go low, go lower. Mace them back, throw bricks at their head. Let’s destroy them. We’ve been doing it a while now and I gotta say, it’s really invigorating. Even when you lose, you feel great about yourself.”
We also took note when McInnes found common cause with the newly created Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights, or FOAK, a military wing of the Proud Boys. In announcing its existence, the group said it was “seeking able bodies and strong-minded men who can keep a cool head under pressure, comfortable in fisticuffs” and that it will serve as “a force to protect and serve when the police are told to stand down.”
The group, which has pledged to meet protests with violence, was directly endorsed by McInnes on Twitter:
Happy to announce the military division of #Proudboys” headed by @BasedStickMan_#AltKnights
DePaul University works to ensure that student organizations can host speakers and events of their choosing. The encouragement of violence, however, has no place here. This is not about the content of McInnes’ speech, but about his public endorsement of violence and the establishment of a military division of his own group, the Proud Boys.
Our students’ well-being remains our highest priority, and therefore DePaul is rescinding McInnes’s invitation to speak on campus.
Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M.
According to Rev. Holtschneider, McInnes’ stalwart belief in self-defense in the event that cops fail to do their job or when Antifa fascists attack those who disagree with their communist viewpoints advocates “violence.” Therefore, it would be corrupting and problematic for DePaul to invite McInnes to speak and explain his point of view on why self-defense is sometimes necessary. As for the Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights, the far-left propaganda machine known as the Southern Poverty Law Center compares them to neo-Nazis.
What remains ironic about Rev. Holtschneider’s statement is the inclusion of a statement that “DePaul Uiversity works to ensure that student organizations can host speakers and events of their choosing” despite the University banning both Milo Yiannopoulos and Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro before the current school year began. When asked about his thoughts on DePaul banning McInnes, Shapiro said the following:
They’re idiotic. How can they ban him for his support for self-defense and cite his supposed support for violence, while banning people because their own students are violent? They banned me because their students got violent with Milo — and I spoke out forcefully against rhetoric approving violence from both right and left. Total fig leaf.
So much for ensuring free speech and the marketplace of ideas.