It’s been a week since D.C. Bureau Chief and White House correspondent for the Gateway Pundit Lucian Wintrich was arrested at the University of Connecticut, and developments are still unfolding.
On Dec. 1, the Gateway Pundit published an article claiming that Catherine Gregory, who is the Associate Director of Career Services and Advising at Quinebaug Valley Community College, who is accused of stealing Wintrich’s paper at the event, was “a communist” and that her “slimy” attorney, Jon Schoenhorn, is in the wrong for defending a “commie” that is “incapable of peaceful political discourse.”
Some members of the UConn community, like Cathy Schlund-Vials, a professor of English and Asian/Asian American studies, said they cannot move past the incident with ease.
“It’s been a hard week,” Schlund-Vials said. “From my perspective of someone that teaches courses on race, many students have come into my office wanting to talk further on what happened and are unclear about where they belong at UConn.”
On Dec. 4, UConn President Susan Herbst sent out an official email detailing the new protocol for potential speaker’s pre examinations.
This protocol will require “a mandated event review process for events sponsored by student groups that could potentially present a safety risk to the campus community, review process to be completed before approval, in the form of a space reservation,” and the event review will entail “a meeting that includes student organizers, Student Affairs, UConn Police and other relevant university offices, specific access planning and controls (who is admitted, a guest list that must be reviewed for safety concerns and bag checks, among other provisions), required security planning and a response plan for disruption and pre-planning outreach to coordinate counter-protest interest,” according to Herbst’s email.
Mary Gallucci, an adjunct professor of English, said she still sees potential complications with the new rules that will be put in place for the 2018 spring semester.
“I’m a little concerned,” Gallucci said. “When you put this protocol in place, you can also have controversial speakers on the left, like people who used to protest nuclear weapons that were jailed for obstructing traffic and paid their time. Would they be on the same list for violence?”
According to Herbst, the purpose of this precaution is to promote safety at the university.
“Speech and safety do not conflict with each other, and we do not have to choose between them,” Herbst said in the email. “Instead, we must do all we can to ensure that both are able to exist simultaneously on our campuses at all times.”
Lillian Whittaker is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.