Let Coulter speak

Behind Enemy Lines


As liberals brace for the trauma that Ann Coulter’s appearance at UC Berkeley is going to unleash on their favorite victim groups, the few intellectual grown-ups among their ranks have been formulating the “not intellectual enough” argument to justify their visibly ideological opposition to her. Caiden Nason, a spokesperson for the Cal Berkeley Democrats (a fine person by the way), issued a statement to this newspaper that said: “Her claims have been disproven over and over again, and she’s just another conservative sensationalist.” Meanwhile, it is very likely that far-left groups are organizing in the dark to cause the same kind of violence at her speaking event that has turned Berkeley into a national embarrassment.

The Daily Cal Editorial Board, a group famous for continually sniffling about how mean and insensitive conservatives are, put out an editorial Friday moaning about how Coulter’s visit to campus will “not be productive” and how she has “shown an unwillingness to partake in intellectual discourse.” If the Editorial Board ever decided to step out of its ideological confines, it would realize that Coulter’s impact on politics, especially in light of the recently concluded presidential election, cannot be overstated. Her book “Adios America” was the intellectual backbone of President Donald Trump’s stance on immigration, a stance that was then adopted by other Republican candidates such as Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio after they comprehended just how popular her stance was with the Republican base. Getting your views translated into the policy platform of a major candidate who is now the president is an intellectual achievement that very few people get to experience, and she deserves credit for that.

A sane human being would think that the mastermind behind the immigration stance of a sitting president of the United States would be someone possessing the requisite qualifications to present the conservative view on the subject of immigration. Wouldn’t any rational liberal who opposes the president’s immigration policy want to question the woman who was behind its formulation? But sanity is an attribute that seldom manifests itself in the opinions of the Editorial Board.

The editorial goes on to contrast the qualifications of Maria Echaveste, who will be presenting the liberal view on this subject, with those of Coulter. It reads: “Echaveste’s experience as an academic and in policy work puts her in stark contrast with Coulter, whose only qualification is stirring the pot.” A little research would have shown the Editorial Board that Coulter worked in the Senate Judiciary Committee, where she handled issues of crime and immigration for former senator Spencer Abraham of Michigan. She has also clerked for Honorable Pasco Bowman II of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. The complete omission of her political credentials and the minimization of her impact to a mere “stirring of the pot” sheds light on how blindly partisan the Editorial Board was and how poorly it served the campus community.

The editorial also attacks the BridgeCal, the nonpartisan organization that is co-hosting the event along with the Berkeley College Republicans, by saying that the group uses “the same misguided rhetoric used by Berkeley College Republicans when they invited Milo Yiannopoulos to speak on campus in February. We all know how that ended.” This is where the editorial group makes the transition from biased to morally obscene. The implication in the above mentioned speech is that BCR somehow brought the Yiannopoulos riots on themselves. The idea that BCR should be blamed for leftists setting the student union on fire, beating up its members, pepper spraying innocent bystanders and then hurling rocks at the police just because they invited a “troll” is preposterous.

Coulter’s speech comes at an important time for Berkeley. Just a couple of weeks ago, David Horowitz’s scheduled appearance had to be canceled because the administration was only able to provide him with a speaking venue a mile away from campus during class time, citing security concerns. Even if we believe that the administration was entirely honest about those concerns, it raises the very disturbing possibility that, going forward, even the mere threat of violence by far-left groups would be sufficient to shut down speakers. Coulter’s appearance will be a litmus test for whether liberals can tone down their hysteria long enough to ask her a coherent question. She will conduct a long question-and-answer session at her event, and I would invite everyone who disagrees with her to get in line and try to stump her.

Even the least substantive trolls serve the purpose of exposing the areas of discourse that are off-limits in society, and hence, there is inherent value in letting them speak. But Coulter is not a troll. She has policy positions that are based on legitimate concerns in the minds of many Americans, and she deserves to be heard. Those who despise her will have the chance to take her on, and those who can’t stand the sight of her are free to stay home. But if your disgust compels you to resort to violence aimed at shutting down the event, I suggest you acquire a pacifier and immediately seek pediatric care.

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  • SMH




    No woman would want to see *HIM* lurking around a “Take Back The Night” event…


  • Immir

    The sole purpose of visits from right wing idiots like Coulter is to sow hate and division, and then blame “liberals” for denying free speech. Coulter and her ilk despise college and education, this is not a place to give her a forum. I guarantee the brown shirts of the Trump Brigade are already planning violence, don’t give them a venue.

    • zzz

      “I guarantee the brown shirts of the Trump Brigade are already planning violence, don’t give them a venue.”


    • SMH




  • Fungirl

    Ann’s books are well researched, insightful, and funny. She saw the Trump phenomenon while the MSM media was busy annointing Hillary. She is reviled by the MSM, political consultants of both parties, and the left because she has revealed their complicity in the immigration debacle starting in 1965. The left wants to change the country. Much of the country doesn’t share their globalist, open border world view. They voted for President Trump.

  • Barbara Striden

    Let the idiot troll speak. A part of living in a democracy involves tolerating those who spout nonsense.

  • Anax of Rhodes

    Debunking Coulter’s arguments proves her wrong. Violently protesting Coulter’s presence proves the alt-right, right.

  • tom

    Berkeley, California = Selma, Alabama.

  • Chris L

    Thanks Rudra

  • Leonidas

    My prediction is Ann Coulter’s speech will be met by “tolerant” Berkeley citizens Wearing black clothes and face masks.
    They will show their “tolerance” by bashing skulls with iron bars and baseball bats.

    • FreedomFan

      My prediction: Things might be a little different this time…

    • RubberSand

      You forgot bike locks. Coated in patchouli oil.

      • Anax of Rhodes

        +1 for your Bastiat profile picture.

  • Dave Doleshal

    I am in general agreement with the most negative assessments of Ann Coulter expressed by various comments here. However, I am nevertheless all in FAVOR of letting her speak on campus. Why not? Let express her opinions, and let her critics point out the flaws, delusions, dishonesty, and falsehoods in what she has to say. Efforts to try to censor her will just give the alt-right one more opportunity to depict themselves as martyrs and “oppressed victims,” but letting her speak will create a further opportunity for her opponents to expose the absurdity of her alt-right claims for what they are.

    • Amber Catherine Kerr

      Exactly, Dave. You couldn’t have said it better. As someone who loathes Ann Coulter, I would absolutely defend her right to speak and be heard.

    • Anax of Rhodes

      This is another golden opportunity for violent leftists to change tactics and see how well they work. Host a different event, or encourage group studies for final exams. Violently protesting will only attract more neutrals to the alt-right.

      • Immir

        The alt-right are the ones causing the violence.

        • Anax of Rhodes


        • zzz

          I would agree with you if I lived in a cave and my only exposure to American politics was the self serving utterances of self styled liberals.

  • Nunya Beeswax

    Ann Coulter is horrible. Intellectually and rhetorically dishonest, mercenary, and one of the more shallow thinkers to be celebrated by the lumpen Right.

    Why isn’t BCR inviting conservatives with some actual intellectual heft to speak? Why Ann Coulter and Milo Yiannoupoulos? Why not Ross Douthat, Ron Dreher, George Will? What is this obsession for pandering to idiots addicted to sound bites?

    • FreedomFan

      It doesn’t matter. Leftist snowflakes automatically smear any Conservative as “racist”.

      Next time though, I have a feeling that the violent Black Bloc thugs might get a little “push-back”.

      • Rian

        If you support Trump and call anyone else a snowflake you must not realize that Trump himself is the biggest one — the slightest offense triggers him to respond emotionally on Twitter.

        As a true conservative, I have to admit most Trump fanatics are much bigger snowflakes than liberals.

        • FreedomFan

          Trump is a Democrat. I never vote Democrat.

    • James Clemons

      what are your thoughts on Ben Shapiro?

      • Nunya Beeswax

        I don’t know much about him, but I’m interested in any conservative who thinks Trump is unfit for office.

        • James Clemons

          Me too!

  • roccolore

    Liberals have no problem inviting terror apologists, Jew-haters, and Communists to campus. And conservatives don’t riot.


    Far left UC immature youngsters versus far right elders. DHorowits was an immatured far left. Who ‘s behind farleft as KGB were dead ?

  • Russell Westbrook

    I can’t believe the proposition of letting someone express controversial political views at Berkeley needed such an elaborate argument. Lol.

    If I were czar of the universe, everyone would be given a chance to speak. Dumb and hateful viewpoints would be exposed and humiliated by people that disagree, but everyone would get to say what’s on their mind.

    and people that try to violently suppress speech would be met with 1000000000000x more violence. I see no problem at all with being violently intolerant of violent intolerance.

    • davidcullison

      You have my respect

    • Al 7-Eleven

      While I disagree with your politics, I commend your stance on free speech

    • James Clemons

      nothing insightful? Have you read any of her books or even looked into them and her statistics? I know you haven’t.

      • Russell Westbrook

        Yes. She sounds like a dumb bomb thrower, and defending her only makes you sound dumb too. And I’m cold bloodedly unbiased on stuff like this – I’m totally willing to admit someone that disagrees with 100% is smarter than someone I agree with 100% if warranted.

        But yeah I’m sure Coulter is pretty smart in private conversation, but she has the public persona of a wwe heel. I’d rather read Christopher Caldwell or Ramesh Ponnuru if I want a conservative take on stuff.

    • Anax of Rhodes

      She was right about Trump’s chance at getting elected, long before November 2016. For that reason alone, her two cents are worth hearing and considering.

  • ESPM360

    I just want to know who are on the approved conservative speaking list in Berkeley.

  • KillerMarmot

    Berkeley has become illiberal, viewing freedom of speech and inquiry as tools of oppression. The argument that “hate speech is not free speech” is heard daily.

    This is extraordinarily dangerous. If we make censorship based on political grounds acceptable (or as the recent editorial ominously recommends, if we bar speech which is “not productive”), what will stop entrenched powers from using this to shut down dissent? The authorities will be able to define what is allowable simply by defining what is hatred, a mere flick of the legislative pen.

    The most powerful weapon you now have is America’s insistence that almost any speech is permitted. You throw this principle away at your peril.

    • Al 7-Eleven

      Exactly. They should know what happens when governments actually suppress free speech

    • Nunya Beeswax

      The punch line is that, per Supreme Court decisions, hate speech is as protected as any other form of speech.

  • Rian

    A conservative column at the Daily Cal is certainly a fresh look, but we shouldn’t compromise the quality of writing simply to voice a minority opinion on campus. I implore you, Rudra, please work on your writing.

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