Sunday, March 29, 2009


A free-speech group, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), is challenging fees schools charge student groups to provide security at campus speaking events, including the $2700 the University of Colorado billed two student groups who brought ex-terrorist Bill Ayers and eco-bore Derrick Jensen to speak in support of Ward Churchill earlier this month. The San Francisco Chronicle:
University spokesman Bronson Hilliard said about 1,100 people attended the event under tight security, which included pat-downs at the entrance, and behaved peacefully. He said university officials have planned to bill the sponsors about $2,700, but listened to the students' objections and have not made a final decision.

"There's no relationship between the cost of the security and the content of the speaker," Hilliard said. He said police consider the likely audience reaction when making security plans and should be able to pass along those costs to event organizers.

"What our law enforcement officials look at is, are we going to have a full venue and might we have audience members who disagree with the message?" Hilliard said. "That's a basic security planning protocol."
Even before FIRE got involved, it was clear CU was dragging its feet on billing the groups. Now, of course, it'll probably never happen. But it will be interesting to see whether they try to charge other groups in the future.

More Ward: PB says Churchill might have been supoenaed as a hostile witness in the upcoming trial of John Boy Graham for the murder of Anna Mae Aquash.

Even more Ward: A "guest opinion" column at the Camera notes, as this bog has several times over the years, the similarities between the research malpractices of Churchill and Holocaust denier David Irving.

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