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Sunday, September 24, 2017

Milo the Marxist

Milo's first coming was a tragedy of sorts;
the second is looking more and more
in line with the Marxist view above.
...(Milo) Yiannopoulos explained that without a student sponsor, he couldn’t hold an official university event. So he announced that he’d be holding an “unofficial” rally at the campus on Sunday.  “We are going to be hosting an event, come hell or high water, tomorrow,” he said...

Then came the sell. Yiannopoulos promoted some future events at other California universities — part of what he’s dubbed his “Troll Academy” tour — and took time to announce that his company, Milo Inc., would be publishing a new book by Pamela Geller: Fatwa: Hunted in America.  

Yiannopoulos had wanted his “Free Speech Rally” in Berkeley to be the Woodstock of the far-right: a big, bad gathering of prominent far-right figureheads, including Ann Coulter and Steve Bannon. And his student co-organizers had hoped left-wing riots at the event might amplify Milo’s message.

But here was Milo on Saturday, his Woodstock canceled, talking to a camera in a poorly lit hotel room, hawking a yet-to-be published book to less than 3,000 live viewers. It was as if no one but Sha Na Na had shown up at Yasgur’s Farm.

Full story at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/milo-yiannopoulos-berkeley-canceled-rally-free-speech-week_us_59c66026e4b0cdc773319bf8

Saturday, September 23, 2017

The Disappearing Act (at Berkeley) - Part 3: She Has Sung & It's Apparently Over

‘Free Speech Week’ is officially off, UC Berkeley announced Saturday morning.
“Representatives of the Berkeley Patriot student organization have informed UC Berkeley’s administration that all of the events scheduled for the coming week have been canceled,” said Cal spokesman Dan Mogulof in an emailed statement. “It is extremely unfortunate that this announcement was made at the last minute, even as the university was in the process of spending significant sums of money and preparing for substantial disruption of campus life in order to provide the needed security for these events.”
The event, sponsored by conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, had been scheduled to start Sunday and was expected to bring a host of right-wing speakers to the famously left-leaning school, which has been battered with claims in recent months that it doesn’t support conservative free speech. The official announcement ends days of speculation and uncertainty around whether the event would take place.
In a Saturday letter to the school, an attorney for Berkeley Patriot, Marguerite Melo, wrote, “On their behalf, you are hereby notified the Berkeley Patriot is canceling all Free Speech Week activities it sponsored.” The letter accused administrators of putting up roadblocks and said the group was “contemplating initiating litigation against the responsible parties and the administration for violation of our clients’ civil rights.”
But in a separate email chain obtained by this news organization, Lucian Wintrich, one of the supposed speakers, told Mogulof the event had been a set-up from the start. “It was known that they didn’t intend to actually go through with it last week, and completely decided on Wednesday,” Wintrich wrote in an email around 10 a.m. Saturday morning.
“Wait, whoah, hold on a second,” wrote a clearly surprised Mogulof. “What, exactly, are you saying? What were you told by MILO Inc? Was it a set-up from the get-go?” “Yes,” came Wintrich’s one-word response...
Note: Despite the threat of a lawsuit against Berkeley, look for the reverse to happen to recover the university's costs.

The Disappearing Act (at Berkeley) - Part 2

Poof!
More on the rapidly disappearing "free speech week" at Berkeley:

...Right-wing provocateur Ann Coulter, one of the highest profile speakers, said Friday that she won’t attend. Nor, reportedly, will former Trump adviser Steve Bannon, another high-profile speaker on the agenda.

Mike Wright, a student leader with the Berkeley Patriot, said Friday the group had not decided whether to cancel Free Speech Week. But he said, “We are concerned about threats and our safety.” ...

Full story at:
http://m.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Cal-student-group-backs-out-of-Free-Speech-Week-12221042.php

The Disappearing Act (at Berkeley)

Poof!
RE: The rapidly disappearing act at Berkeley

...Yiannopoulos says he's coming back with a lineup of high-profile conservatives, but the star power faded Friday when conservative commentator Ann Coulter announced she's not coming. Coulter told The Associated Press that Yiannopoulos' team was in touch with hers about speaking but she heard "the administration was dead set on blocking this event" so she decided not to bother...

Full story at:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-ann-coulter-berkeley-free-speech-20170922-story.html

Friday, September 22, 2017

End of Title 9 Dear Colleague Letter (Kind of)

News reports indicate that Secretary of Education De Vos has scrapped the Title 9 "Dear Colleague" letter:

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos scrubbed Obama-era guidance for universities investigating sexual assaults on campus, replacing the program with temporary rules.

DeVos has called the existing rules unfair against those accused of an assault.

“Schools must continue to confront these horrific crimes and behaviors head-on,” she said in a statement Friday. “There will be no more sweeping them under the rug. But the process also must be fair and impartial, giving everyone more confidence in its outcomes.”

DeVos released a temporary Q&A to guide schools on investigating assaults under the Title IX law, which prevents sexual-based discrimination in higher education.

It will allow them to choose which set of standards they want to use when probing an assault.

Her move does away with a 2011 directive that became known as the “Dear Colleague Letter," on how to enforce the 45-year-old Title IX law...

Full story at http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/devos-obama-era-rules-title-ix-article-1.3513555

Note: Item from before the announcement:

...Under the guidance of the (Obama-era) letter, which was issued in 2011, colleges are mandated to adjudicate cases based on a "preponderance of evidence," a lower standard of proof that finds guilt in cases where an assault is more likely to have occurred than not. Ms. Napolitano said that the "preponderance" standard is appropriate in sexual-assault cases, adding that the University of California would continue to employ it regardless of whether the federal government dictated as much...

Source: http://www.chronicle.com/article/Napolitano-Riffs-on-DeVos/241251

Free Speech Website/Video at Berkeley

UC-Berkeley has created a free speech website* with a video by Chancellor Christ in preparation for the so-called "free speech week" that is supposed to occur next week. (But, if you have been following our blog posts, who knows if it will?)

The video is embedded in the website from an unlisted URL on YouTube. Such things can be taken down over time, particularly if things don't work out so well. So we have archived the video where it won't disappear.

You can see it at our alternative website at the link below:

===
*http://freespeech.berkeley.edu/

Thursday, September 21, 2017

New 9 Director

UCLA officials announced the appointment of a new director for the campus Title IX office Tuesday.
Mohammed Cato will replace interim Title IX coordinator Jessica Price and will start in his new position Sept. 25. Price took over for Kathleen Salvaty after she became Title IX coordinator for the University of California system.
The Title IX Office operates under the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and is responsible for UCLA’s compliance with policies and procedures to prevent and respond to gender discrimination, sexual harassment and sexual violence...
Cato received his bachelor’s degree from UC Irvine and a law degree and master of urban planning degree from UCLA. He will transition to UCLA from his current role as the assistant director of the Equal Opportunity Office and deputy Title IX coordinator at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington.