Progressives shout down Christina Hoff Sommers at Portland law school

Christina Hoff Sommers was scheduled to speak today at Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon. Yesterday, in anticipation of her arrival, a coalition of progressive groups led by a local chapter of the National Lawyer’s Guild announced they would be protesting her appearance. Specifically, a letter released by the group said that Sommers was a “known fascist” and that her invitation to speak was an “act of aggression and violence” toward others.

In case you had any doubt, the violence and aggression they are talking about here is speech. “Free speech is certainly an important tenet to a free, healthy society, but that freedom stops when it has a negative and violent impact on other individuals. There is no debate here.” Here’s the letter in full:

Rose City Antifa also took an interest in Sommer’s speaking schedule:

The announced plan was to show up with signs in opposition to Sommers, which would have been fine if they had sat quietly and given her a chance to talk. But as expected, they tried to take over the room and shout down her speech:

As Sommers started her talk, the leader of the protest group started shouting a prepared speech, dutifully chanted by her fellow protesters, about denying a platform to male supremacy. She’s wearing a jacket that reads “Stay Woke” on the back.

A few minutes into her speech, students interrupted and then demanded she answer questions:

Then they started singing to prevent Sommers from speaking: “Which side are you on?”

Then they tried playing music over a phone (or some device):

Sommers highlighted some of the videos, noting she was only able to give about half of her planned speech:

A small minority of students believe their, often mistaken, convictions about a speaker should prevent anyone else from getting a chance to listen or engage that person’s ideas. Inevitably, it’s the most progressive students who believe speech is the equivalent of violence and therefore must be stopped before it happens. And unfortunately, in this case, it seems to have worked. Sommers is right that the school representative should have insisted the protesters quiet down during the speech, rather than give them a partial victory by cutting the speech in half. This only ensures more behavior like this the next time a conservative speaker dares to come to campus.