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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Campus

Dozens protest speech by ‘racist’ conservative writer


Conservative writer David Horowitz spoke to a packed audience about “terror networks” at the Science and Engineering Classroom Building on Thursday night as dozens of other students protested the speaker outside.

The protests, organized by a coalition of progressive student groups, shouted “Racists — off our campus,” among other chants.

The David Horowitz Freedom Center, which the speaker leads, last month named the University of Houston one of the top ten schools that support terrorism. Thursday’s event was organized by the UH chapter of Young America’s Foundation.

The room reached capacity before Horowitz’s speech began and the fire marshal prohibited anymore attendees from entering, including reporters from The Cougar. Shortly after the event started, dozens of protesters left marching, opening up room inside, but security did not want anyone entering after Horowitz began speaking.

Posters and signs were placed around campus in advance of Horowitz’s speech, some claiming ties between terrorist organization Hamas and Students for Justice in Palestine, or SJP. A progressive student coalition consisting of members from SJP, Students for Democratic Society and other political organizations on campus organized the planned protest in a day, said pharmacy graduate student Sarah Zidat.

Zidat said she and other protesters listened to the introduction of Horowitz’s speech before Zidat stood up and yelled, “David, your bigotry is not welcome on campus, and we do not welcome your presence here either.”

Protesters from inside the Science and Engineering Classroom Building marched outside, meeting up with dozens more, and all began chanting “Racists — off our campus.” Then they marched down the side of the Science and Engineering Classroom Building also shouting “Undocumented — Unafraid” and “Black Lives Matter.”

The group of protesters stopped in front of the Science and Engineering Research Center and shifted between shouting their chants and speaking aloud why they stand for Palestine.

One student, history doctoral candidate Patrick Higgins, spoke during the protest about the significance of Thursday being the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, a message from the British government in 1917 that gave support for a home for Jews in Palestine.

Higgins, who is affiliated with Students for Democratic Society, said they are always willing to raise their voices on behalf of Palestinian people. He said he rejects Horowitz calling the university a part of a “terror network.”

“He wants to conflate the T word, knowing the social atmosphere of this country, knowing about anti-Arab bigotry,” Higgins said. “He wants to conflate that with this buzzword that he uses, terrorism, and we say no.”

Paul Schnee, who works in the automobile industry and just moved from Los Angeles to Houston in May, came to watch Horowitz speech. Schnee said he has seen Horowitz speak many times before, mostly through attending luncheons in L.A. put on by the David Horowitz Freedom Center called “Wednesday Morning Club.”

“He is one of the premier voice that speaks and writes against the left,” Schnee said. “Anything he has to say on the matter is worth listening too.”

Schnee said Horowitz’s conversion from a “man of the left” to a conservative in the 1980s is probably equal to “St. Paul on the road to Damascus.” He said he expected a protest to break out, and they usually happen when Horowitz speaks at college campuses.

“Because, particularly, what they want to do is shut down free speech,” Schnee said. “They’re all for free speech, just as long as they are the ones doing the talking.”

History senior Brant Roberts is an officer with SJP and spoke out at the protest against Horowitz. Roberts said Horowitz is not welcome to speak on campus because he is not willing to engage in a dialogue.

“It creates an environment where our students will feel endangered, and could give rise to more talks like this who are clearly white supremacists,” Roberts said. “We just don’t want to give a free space for white supremacists to come here, and to feel as if this is a place for them to come and speak.”

Video by Corbin Ayres/The Cougar

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  • David

    Sad that some people think that spencer, Horowitz, and others from this same group have anything positive to add to our society.

  • David

    Also…don’t know if any of these groups but why is it ok for Israel to take homes away from people that have lived there for generations and settle Israelites in that land. Really that is ok.

    • ThirteenthLetter

      Was it OK for the rest of the Arab world to do the same, when they expelled all the Jews in 1948? It seems that some ethnic cleansing is OK with you SJP types.

  • dhorowitz10

    Nice one-sided reporting. SJP was created by Hamas and is funded and orchestrated by Hamas as has been documented in congressional testimony – facts I went over in my talk and in the literature we handed out, and which you left completely unreported. Instead you repeated their ignorant slanders while being careful to put “racist” in quotes, so I couldn’t sue you for libel. This is the cowardly way to slime an individual and keep people from weighing the factual nature of what he has to say. But then the Cougar is the campus paper for a university that hosted a Hamas support conference last week. Hamas is a State Dept designated terrorist organization whose stated goal is the annihilation of the Jews of Israel. Richard Spencer is a bigoted y with whom I have no relation and towards whom I have utter contempt. But he is very much the political kin of the protesters who came to spew ignorant slanders in an effort to keep people from hearing what I had to say. There were Nazis as my talk last night all right, but they were members of SJP and SDS. As for David’s ignorant comments below, Israel doesn’t occupy an inch of Arab land. The Palestine Mandate belonged to the Turks – who are not Arabs or “Palestinians” for 400 years prior to the creation of the state of Israel. Jews are the indigenous people of the land around the Jordan and have lived there continuously for 3000 years. The Arabs invaded and conquered the region in the 7th Century. During the 1500 plus years of Arab and then Turkish occupation there never was a people or a country or a political unit called “Palestinian” or “Palestine.” These claims were first made in 1964, 16 years after the State of Israel was created. “Palestinians” are people invented in 1964 for the specific purpose of pulling the wool over credulous eyes and masking under the pretense of “self-determination” the genocidal Jew-hating agendas of the Arabs. If SJP or Hamas cared a fig about self-determination for Palestinian Arabs they would be boycotting and firing rockets into Jordan which is 70% Palestinian Arab but is ruled by a Hashemite monarchy. There is no Palestine liberation movement for Jordan because the agenda of the anti-Israel left is the destruction of the Jewish state not the creation of a Palestinian one.

  • Richard

    “Zidat said she and other protesters listened to the introduction of Horowitz’s speech…”
    “Roberts said Horowitz is not welcome to speak on campus because he is not willing to engage in a dialogue.”

    That’s odd that they say that!
    If they were really listening, they would know that Mr.Horowitz started off his lecture by saying that he will have a Q&A with anyone in the room, even those that don’t agree with him. Seven minutes into his lecture, the SJP members (who apparently only wanted a discussion) got up and started shouting, flipping us off, eventually leaving and going outside.
    None of them stayed for a dialogue, they simply came in, screamed at him, and went outside to say how he didn’t want a dialogue.

    Their screaming did nothing but prove his point that they don’t want a discussion.

  • John H.

    Dear “Cougar” editors… Thanks for the news about the reaction to the Horowitz speech, but you missed a spot, and a big one:

    What did Horowitz actually *say* in his speech? This article doesn’t address that question in the slightest, and I as a campus outsider am left with a desire to know what his message was when he spoke.

    –John H.
    Burien, WA

  • John H.

    Dear “Cougar” editors:

    Thanks for the news about the reaction to the Horowitz speech, but you missed a spot, and a big one:

    What did Horowitz actually *say* in his speech? This article doesn’t address that question in the slightest, and I as a campus outsider am left with a desire to know what the content of his message was.

    –John H.
    Burien, WA

  • 25 people from Entho-groups and campus socialists protest former Marxist.

  • Arafat

    Another example of the Left’s definition of free speech, that is, any speech they disagree with is forbidden.

  • Me and 72 Virgin Goat.Verified

    Never forget the 12 brave US Army soldiers murdered by Islamist “Palestinian American” Major Nidal Hassan at Fort Hood, TX.

  • roccolore

    Islamists and liberals hate free speech.

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