Right-wing antagonist Ann Coulter cancelled a University of Ottawa address last night after organizers decided it wasn’t safe to speak.
The move followed boisterous demonstrations outside that sponsors of the appearance feared could turn violent.
“There was a risk there could be physical violence,” said Canadian conservative activist Ezra Levant, who was scheduled to introduce Ms. Coulter.
He said some demonstrators swarmed the event, making it “a situation the security and police advised was untenable for safety reasons.”
In an interview, Ms. Coulter said she's given 100 to 200 speeches at colleges and last night was the first time one of her addresses has been “completely shut down.” She said the incident reflects poorly on the University of Ottawa.
“It's at the absolute bush league, bottom of the barrel schools that you get the worst treatment and yet and still I've never seen this before,” she said.Good one, Ann, but I think I might have put it another way. It's not that the scores are so low that dumber kids can get in. It's that the political correctness is so pervasive that students' I.Q. levels drops significantly once they've been on campus for only a short while.
“I'm guessing the scores to get into the University of Ottawa are not very challenging.”...
As for the zinger about U of Houle being "bush league"--I'd say that (along with "head-up-its-butt" and "pathetic") pretty much sums up public discourse in this coutry, and especially on university campuses, where nary is heard a conservative word.
Oh, and the Globe scribbler who pegged Coulter as a "right-wing antagonist"--I'd put him in the "bush leagues," too.
Update: John Oakley just ran a debate between the Canadian Arab Federation's Khaled Mouammar and Ezra Levant (who could only talk for a moment because he was about to board a plane to Calgary, where Coulter is next slated to speak). Mr. M., of course, thought what happened in Ottawa was a-okay, since Coulter is a woman who is "viciously promoting hatred" again certain groups. He complained that there's a "double standard" in Canada whereby George Galloway isn't allowed in to talk about Israel's human rights violations, but Coulter is permitted entry. There's also a "double standard" about Israeli Apartheid Week, says Mouammar--all university students want to do is "debate" Israel's human rights violations, and Jason Kenney and other politicians are wrong to stand up in their legislatures and condemn it.
Ezra pointed out that there's no comparision between Galloway and Coulter. Galloway supports criminal terrorist group Hamas, and wanted to come to Canada to raise funds for that criminal organization. Coulter supports no terrorist groups and was "shut down by a bunch of brownshirts," an action "of which I'm sure Mr. Mouammar approves heartilty." Ezra called this type of censorship "un-Canadian" and suggested that his opponent "needs to drop his Saudi values and get in synch with Canadian values."
Mouammar tried to claim that Coulter's speech would have been a breach of Section 13. Ezra pointed out, however, that the censorship provision does not apply to speeches, only to telephone messages and the Internet. Not that that stopped Provost Houle from writing his threatening letter and ginning up the crowd such that Coulter's speech had to be canceled due to security concerns. And if you want to talk about a "double standard," what about Provost Houle, who doesn't write threatening letters about the "anti-Semitic festival" it holds every year?
The other "double standard"--the university handed Coulter a bill to pay for her own security, something it doesn't do for other speakers. (Since she didn't get to speak I guess she can tell them to stick the bill where the sun don't shine.)
"This is Saudi tactics, and Mr. Mouammar should be ashamed... He needs to realize he's not in Arabia." And so should the University of Ottawa, which, in the grip of Saudi-style thinking, did "a Mouammar" and tried to censor Coulter.
To which Mouammar, who had the last word since Ezra had to dash, responded: Blah blah blah Israel's human rights violations, blah blah blah Israel bad--or words to that effect.
Update: BCF has a good run down of the fallout (to mix a metaphor). See FFF, too.
Update: Ann Coulter hits back