Protest ban at Florida university after anti-Sasse rally by alt-right and neo-Nazis
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida State University President John Thrasher on Thursday announced that the university will be pulling students from a university event because of the presence of anti-Semitic and anti-immigrant groups and the presence of several hundred protesters who have gathered in support of Republican congressman Ron DeSantis, who is the state Senate candidate ousted by DeSantis in Tuesday’s Republican primary in Florida, a Republican who opposes a Muslim registry, among other issues.
“We have a responsibility to protect the students in our community from the hateful speech and intimidation that has been expressed,” Thrasher said in a statement.
The announcement, posted on Facebook, came less than 24 hours after the university’s administration had told students that they could expect an “anti-free speech event” there on April 9.
Florida State University President John Thrasher responded to an online post about a planned “free speech” rally. Thrasher said he’s concerned the event will encourage a “violent counter-protest” by members of the “alt-right and neo-Nazis.”
“We do not want to make matters worse by adding more potential targets for these groups.”
An online petition to cancel the planned “anti-free speech event” — which was organized by the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to protest the planned rollout of a “national security” registry, a Muslim-ban registry, and a plan to implement a mandatory “no-fly” list — has gained more than 7,000 signatures. The event is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. April 9 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Tallahassee.
“We are extremely concerned that FSU administrators have allowed this event to go forward despite its anti-Semitic and anti-immigrant history,” the petition reads. “This event is yet another example of how the University of Florida has failed its students, alumni, and taxpayers.”
A previous petition calling on FSU to cancel the event has garnered more than 2,000 signatures. The petition stated:
“The purpose of the event is to provoke violence against Jews and non-Jews, anti-government activists, and anyone who shares