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UC-Santa Barbara profs propose ‘sanctuary faculty’ to help students cope with ‘hateful’ speech

In response to the University of California-Santa Barbara Associated Students’ vote earlier this month in favor of funding a talk by conservative Ben Shapiro, last evening some professors proposed designating certain staff members as “sanctuary faculty” in order to “support students who are distressed.”

“The idea is modeled after the ‘sanctuary campus,’ a symbolic designation with special powers,” the Daily Nexus reports.

The Nexus lists several colleges where students have demanded “sanctuary” status; The College Fix recently detailed the efforts at various Ivy League institutions.

Shapiro’s coming appearance at UCSB has left progressives pondering ways to, if not thwart his talk, at least demonstrate their displeasure. Associated Students Executive Director Marisela Marquez suggested students make use of the state Compulsory Fee Refund Application which “allows students to withdraw their portion of student funding from specific programs.”

From the article:

The court ruled in 1993 that the UC cannot force students to pay for events that pursue political or ideological goals through “compulsion and coercion.”

“This specific ruling was obviously brought up at this specific meeting because one of the administrators who has a lot of ties with a lot of these left-leaning organizations,” Andrew Gates, College Republicans president, told the Nexus during the Senate meeting Wednesday, adding that the ruling could work against “left-leaning” events.

MORE: UCSB dean tries to stop students from filming Ben Shapiro funding debate

“We have, what, one event per quarter? But if you divide 5,000 by 23,000 students … compare that with the countless left-leaning events that you know all the conservative students could, like, get a refund for,” he said. …

[Dean of Student Life Katya] Armistead, who has been a vocal advocate of students who are against the College Republicans program, said “We need to take our campus back.”

“I’m upset, too,” Armistead said. “It kills me because I’m the one who ultimately has to make this event successful.”

Some faculty showed their contempt for free speech by arguing that Shapiro opponents should “occupy seats and argu[e] with [him] point by point during his lecture.” I’m sure these profs would have little objection if opponents did this to them during a speech, eh?

Nevertheless, a UCSB graduate suggested an alternative: Host a “counter” event during Shapiro’s talk. This tactic appeared to work rather well during Milo Yiannopoulos’ appearance at the University of Delaware.

Read the full Daily Nexus piece.

MORE: UCSB student government approves resolution in support of free speech

MORE: DePaul University bans Ben Shapiro from speaking on campus

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 20 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.