University of California at Los Angeles: Controversial Student Event Cancelled

Category: Free Speech
Schools: University of California, Los Angeles

The University of California–Los Angeles (UCLA) has reversed a decision that forced a student organization to cancel an immigration debate in response to threatened protests after it could not pay a $15,000 security fee. After UCLA’s Objectivist group was forced to pay the security fee or cancel the event, they turned to FIRE for help, who wrote Acting Chancellor Norman Abrams to remind him that UCLA was legally bound to uphold the First Amendment, and that forcing a club to pay excessive security fees because of the threat of an unruly mob was also unconstitutional. As a result, UCLA changed its position, emphasizing in a letter to FIRE that the Objectivist group could host the event without paying the security fee. The unconstitutional “heckler’s veto” has been dealt another blow on college campuses.