We’ve seen plenty of examples of vandalism and reactions to Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, bringing her “Lies Feminists Tell” talk to college campuses. Some have been good examples of debate, such as groups organizing peaceful protests or attending the talk and challenging Hawkins on her arguments. Others have been violent, like groups tearing down banners or flyers. ANTIFA also showed up before several of Hawkins’ speeches on campus in California and held up nonsensical signs or called Hawkins by the wrong name.
But nothing matches what happened at Western Washington University recently, where someone apparently set a speaking tour banner on fire. Hawkins is speaking at Western Washington University this Thursday, May 9th, as the final stop for the semester on her Spring speaking tour.
no western alert for this one but someone finally lit that stupid poster on fire pic.twitter.com/bkFuCezHrD
— garbage cat (@abbyoatmeal) May 6, 2019
According to Karlie Lodjic, the senior advisor of the Western Washington University Students for Life club, the students put the banner up on the Environmental Sciences building about two weeks ago, on April 25th.
On Saturday May 4th, the banner appears to have been burned off the wall. Based off the location of the banner, someone likely would have needed to use a ladder or some sort of device to burn or tear down the banner before burning it.
Kristan Hawkins said in a statement, “We strongly condemn this act of violence and intimidation. We challenge anyone who disagrees with us to come hear the presentation on Thursday instead of resorting to cowardly acts of violence.”
Lodjic blasted the vandal, saying, “Threats and intimidation of violence should not be tolerated at a university that values free-speech. Hawkins’ speech is open to the public and everyone is invited to come and debate and share their beliefs during the Q and A. Yet, these vandals chose to take out their frustration at the mere presence of dissenting points of views by committing an act of arson.”
A police report has been filed and the university is investigating the incident. The police have declared it an act of arson, according to an e-mail sent to the campus community.
Prior to the banner being destroyed, some people, most likely students, criticized Hawkins and the banner, and joked about destroying the banner.
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