DePaul denies Crowder, says he doesn't 'align' with mission
DePaul University rejected a request from its Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) chapter to host conservative commentator and comedian Steven Crowder on campus.
According to an email obtained by Campus Reform sent to Jorin Burkhart, chairman of DePaul’s YAF chapter, the group received word from Associate Vice President of Student Development Peggy Burke that the request had been denied because Crowder’s presence wouldn’t align “with Depaul’s education mission.”
“The Speaker Review Board denied this speaker request due to their research on Mr. Crowder and came to the conclusion that he creates videos to purposely to rouse and provoke people by making fun of the opposing side,” she wrote. “They didn’t see how this aligns with DePaul’s educational mission.”
In response, Burkhart called the denial “ridiculous and pathetic,” noting the hypocrisy of his university that “boasts in its so-called open-mindedness.”
“It’s ridiculous and pathetic that DePaul, a place which boasts in its so-called open-mindedness, is afraid of someone as mainstream and harmless as Steven Crowder,” he told Campus Reform. “However, based on the administration’s pattern of making it difficult to impossible for conservative groups to hold successful events, I can’t say I’m surprised.”
DePaul’s student organizations website, notably, claims that the university “is committed to fostering an education community that welcomes free and open discourse.”
“We believe that speakers provide an opportunity for students to hear and discuss opposing viewpoints on a wide range of topics,” it adds. “As such, DePaul encourages student organizations to plan, promote, and engage in thoughtful, respectful, and challenging dialogue, including through guest speakers.”
Crowder now joins the company of other commentators who have been denied a platform at the Catholic university, including Ben Shapiro and Gavin McInnes.
“We students pay an absurd amount of money to attend a ‘Catholic’ school that promised us a liberal arts education and a diversity of ideas,” Burkhart said. “We constantly receive the exact opposite. All I can say is that we’re tired of the bulls---.“
Campus Reform reached out to Burke for comment, but did not receive a response in time for publication.
Note: Ema is a member of the DePaul YAF chapter, but had no involvement in the effort to invite Crowder to campus.
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @emfrappelatte