As University of Utah prepares for Ben Shapiro speech, far left groups announce plans to shut him down (Update)

The far left only has one mode these days: shout down their opponents. With conservative author Ben Shapiro headed to the University of Utah for a speech, the far left has already announced its plans to shut him down. From the Salt Lake Tribune:


We have no shame in saying that we intend to shut down Ben Shapiro. This is not a decision we came to based on youthful emotions, or out of some desire for the world to be “one big safe space.” This decision was arrived at based on a real, material understanding of the political environment of Utah, and the material effects of an emboldened far right.

As an example; Utah is already a state with a homelessness and suicide crisis amongst LGBTQ youth. Ben Shapiro has openly called transgender people mentally ill

The letter concludes, “This will not be a violent protest, but we intend to exercise our free speech in the boldest and most unapologetic way we can, even if Shapiro, his fans, and the University police would have it otherwise.” It is signed by Students for a Democratic Society at the University of Utah, Black Lives Matter – Salt Lake City, and University of Utah Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanx de Aztlán (MEChA).

KUTV reports a Black Lives Matter SLC member preparing to protest the speech said, “People like Ben Shapiro are the most dangerous on this earth, and we we are going to fight him tomorrow aren’t we.”

Last month about 50 protesters occupied the space outside the university president’s office demanding that he cancel the planned speech. After speaking with the group for 10 minutes, the university president eventually left with a police escort:

According to the Associated Press, University of Utah police will be turned out to make sure protests don’t cross a line into violence:


The University of Utah plans to ramp up security Wednesday night for conservative speaker Ben Shapiro, putting into action the lessons it learned from a visit to the University of California, Berkeley, earlier this month for his appearance that drew a huge police presence to ward off violent protests…

The university will prohibit protesters from wearing face masks and use barriers to separate them from those attending Shapiro’s talk, Nelson said.

All 40 University of Utah police officers were expected to be on campus, as well as an unspecified number of officers from other departments. Some classes near the speech will be moved.

Earlier this month, Berkeley spent $600,000 on security measures for a Ben Shapiro appearance at the school. Nine people were arrested outside the event but it went off without the kind of vandalism and violence that greeted a planned speech by Milo Yiannopoulos at the school earlier this year.

Update: Here are the protesters (hat tip William Amos):

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