After Back-And-Forth, Ann Coulter Speech Is Off At UC Berkeley

Jandhyala said his student group has been trying frantically to find an off-campus venue for Thursday, and he said he shares the concerns of university officials that Coulter's appearance at Sproul - and the protests and counter-protests it will likely spark - could grow violent.

According to the Washington Post, in addition to BridgeUSA - a moderate student group at UC Berkeley - the Young America's Foundation (YAF) also withdrew their support and ordered Coulter not to appear.

The school proposed that Coulter instead speak on a separate date during the afternoon, but Coulter and the Berkeley College Republicans rejected that idea on the grounds that many students would have scheduling conflicts because the event would take place during the day and it was also a period of time in which students would be preparing for final exams.

Says Coulter, the university then realized the group "wasn't serious and dropped ongoing negotiations over a room. And I'm so sorry for free speech crushed by thugs", Coulter said to her supporters on Facebook earlier today. The bigger the demonstration, the louder the uproar, the more significant the threat of violence, the more proof Coulter has that she's an exciting and unsafe figure conservatives can use to tweak liberals. "It's a sad day for free speech", she told the Times.

Here's a look at some of the protests in the Berkeley, Calif., area in recent months.

NPR reports that confusion reigns as to why precisely the appearance was cancelled: it was either the university or Coulter herself or a combination of both. We're anxious about violence and student safety and our own safety as well.

Campus officials had originally expressed caution about the planned Coulter speech, saying they had learned of the potential for violent protests from members of the student body.

"The GOP should change their motto to "Next Time"- We'll fight them next time", she said.

"T$3 he UC Berkeley administration did not cancel the Coulter event and has never prohibited Ms. Coulter from coming on campus", it said.

It said its lawsuit against the university was continuing, though it's not clear what relief it could obtain now that Coulter has withdrawn her plan to show up Thursday.

The university offered to reschedule the event for May 2, but Coulter and the student group that invited her said no. The administration was pushing back after a series of violent clashes this year on campus and in downtown Berkeley between far-right and far-left protesters, including ahead of a February 1 talk by right-wing provocateur, Milo Yiannopoulos.

But Cole said late Wednesday the government cannot define threats to free speech because that could result in censorship. "We appreciate that she now recognizes that our concerns were real". The organizers of Coulter's planned speech also promised she will still find a way to speak at the campus, but on Wednesday, Coulter emailed major USA media outlets saying that she will not participate in the event after all. I was just supposed to give the speech."Coulter, one of the best-known conservative commentators in the United States, had been scheduled to give a speech critical of pro-immigration policies on Thursday".

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