Controversial Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos got an up-close view of the intolerance of the left when it comes to speech it doesn’t agree with. This occurred when a speech he was to give at U.C. Berkeley was canceled after masked demonstrators hurled fireworks, rocks and Molotov cocktails, plunging the campus into a state of chaos.
Berkeley—the birthplace of the free speech movement—showed once again that it has a very narrow definition of what free speech really is.
The liberal media, for its part, has been breathlessly reporting on the rioting and seemingly giving the demonstrators a free pass since they were shutting down the conservative Yiannopoulos. They ignored the fact that the university president and campus police did nothing to apprehend the perpetrators, thereby giving tacit support to their actions.
This isn’t the first time, however, that campus protesters at Berkeley have set fires in response to speech that they don’t agree with.
In 2010, Dan Flynn, executive director of our sister organization Accuracy in Academia, appeared at Berkeley to give a speech to a group of conservative students about former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was sentenced to death for the 1981 murder of Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Faulkner.
During Flynn’s speech, a group of students began shouting curse words and epithets, calling him a “Nazi” and “racist,” among other things.
Flynn, a Marine Reservist, persevered and managed to complete his speech despite the disruptions.
At the end of his talk, the same group of left-wing agitators then took the remaining copies of Flynn’s monograph, Cop Killer: How Mumia Abu-Jamal Conned Millions Into Believing He Was Framed, and held a book-burning, all while the campus police stood by and did nothing.
Other conservatives have faced the wrath of Berkeley students over the years, but nothing like what Flynn and Yiannopoulos have faced. President Trump was right when he questioned the federal funding of a university which tolerates this type of behavior and endangers the safety of all students.