Free Speech at McNeese State University

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

April 18, 2018 is a day that I will long remember. The students, faculty, and administration at McNeese certainly will, too. The Free Speech event was so much more of a success than I could’ve expected!

We arrived on campus around 9:00 and began preparing for the day. Passers by gawked with half-glazed eyes at the three guys tirelessly blowing up a giant beach ball. This provided ample opportunity to distribute literature such as pocket constitutions, how to deal with police, free speech pamphlets, and general YAL information pamphlets. After no small amount of sweat, Joe decided to go purchase an electric pump and had quite the adventure in experiencing Lake Charles culture while doing so. He returned, we finished airing the ball, and hastily grabbed our markers.

We developed quite the retinue as we began rolling our massive sphere around. A buzz began among the students as they eagerly scrawled various messages across the multi-colored surface. Each puzzled look coupled with timid repetitions of “whatever I want?” was more satisfied than the last and bred the next. We were able to distribute nearly all of our literature and  a significant portion of those who stopped signed our petition. Of these, many indicated interest in joining the chapter and working to make liberty win!

As the day was drawing to a close and I was deflating the ball, a visitor wearing a university ID appeared. He is the director of multiculturalism on campus and he came out to ensure that everything was “acceptable” and “within reason.” I asked for clarification on these phrases and specifically if he thought there were limitations on free speech. He said “absolutely.” Naturally, I once again asked for clarification. Our conversation lasted between 20 to 30 minutes and was rather fruitful. It fostered better understanding and opened important avenues of communication.

I’m anticipating good things to come, here at McNeese. I’m eager to further this chapter and host the next event! Thank you for all the support in making liberty win on this campus!  Special thanks to Joe Shamp and Clayton “Smitty” Smith for making the trip over from University of Louisiana at Lafayette to help me get things started. BIG thanks to them; I couldn’t have done it without them.

 

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