Donald Trump Jr. is on a book tour for his new book “Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us.” Sunday, the tour launched with an appearance at UCLA which was met with some left-wing protesters outside and inside the event. But the two hour talk was cut short after it was announced that there would not be a Q&A session. Vice reports what happened next:
When it was announced that he wouldn’t be taking questions, all hell broke loose. Trump told the crowd, “We’re willing to listen,” but the angry chants persisted. Trump then tried to explain why they didn’t want to do the Q&A.
“It’s because people try to hijack it with nonsense, looking to go for some sort of soundbite,” he said. “You have people spreading nonsense, spreading hate, to try to take over the room.”
[Kimberly] Guilfoyle stood up and tried to talk the crowd down.
“You’re not making your parents proud by being rude and disruptive and discourteous. We are happy to answer a question,” she said. “Respect the people around you… You don’t play by the same rules.”
The reason they refused to hold the Q&A is because Nick Fuentes’ America First group has been organizing people to show up at TPUSA hosted events, like this one, to take over the Q&A segments with a series of scripted questions. As you can hear in this clip, when Don Jr. left the stage, the America First people started chanting:
The Guardian, which was first to report this, pointed out that America First was behind much of the disruption inside the event:
A number of the loudest voices at Sunday’s event were supporters of Nick Fuentes, a 21-year-old activist with a podcast called America First that has taken particular aim at Turning Point USA and its 25-year-old founder, Charlie Kirk. In a number of his own recent campus appearances, Kirk has faced questions accusing him of being more interested in supporting Israel than in putting America first. He has responded by calling his detractors conspiracists and racists.
On Sunday, Kirk appeared alongside Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle but said nothing.
Two Fuentes supporters, delighted with the outcome of Trump Jr’s appearance, later told the Guardian the pro-Trump movement was being infected with “fake conservatism” and that the president himself was at the mercy of a cabal of deep state operatives who wouldn’t let him do many of the things he campaigned on.
This is the wrong tack to dealing with alt-right protesters. Rather than refuse to hear their questions, the better response is to answer them. That’s what Ben Shapiro did last week at his speech at Stanford in which he attacked the alt-right, especially America First, as racist and anti-Semitic.
Here’s a local news clip which shows some of the protests outside the event:
And here’s the Guardian’s clip showing the protests that ended the event: