McGlone v. Cheek

From August 2011, to February 2014
University of Tennessee, Knoxville

John McGlone, a Christian minister, McGlone began visiting the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in order to preach to students on open campus areas in 2008. In 2011, McGlone was told that he needed sponsorship by a student group, organization, staff, or faculty in order to be permitted to speak on campus. However, the policy was ambiguous as between requiring sponsorship by students or student groups. McGlone filed suit against various University administrators, alleging that the University’s sponsorship requirement was unconstitutionally vague.

Charles Murray, Middlebury College

March 2017
Middlebury College

Charles Murray was prevented from speaking at an event at Middlebury College. A faculty member also suffered a concussion after a confrontation with student protestors. More than five dozen Middlebury students were disciplined, but none were suspended or expelled.

Hershey v. Goldstein

From May 2012, to May 2013
Lehman College

Richard Hershey is a vegan activist who began to hand out leaflets on the main public walkway inside of Lehman College’s campus. Hershey was told by campus police and administrators that he was not permitted to hand out his booklets on campus, but that he could do so outside of the college’s main gates. When he tried to do so, he was arrested for trespassing. Hershey filed suit against various college administrators and public safety officers alleging that the college had violated his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights.

Gavin McInnes, NYU

February 2017

Gavin McInnes, a controversial far-right media personality, was pepper sprayed by non-student protestors while he was attempting to enter an event hosted by College Republicans at New York University (“NYU”). After recovering, McInnes went on to give his planned speech only to be interrupted after three minutes by protesting NYU students. Although this second protest was non-violent, it prohibited McInnes from continuing his talk. After twenty minutes of the continuous disruption, McInnes decided to cancel the event and leave campus.

Michael Strickland, Portland State University

March 2019
Portland State University

A group of protestors—one wielding a cowbell—disrupted a College Republicans-sponsored presentation at Portland State University (“PSU”) by conservative journalist Michael Strickland. Whenever Strickland would attempt to speak, the protestor would begin yelling and ringing the cowbell continuously. Although a campus police officer was present, he did not intervene. After continuous disruption for an hour—the allotted time for the event—the protestor left, and the university allowed the event to continue for another thirty minutes. PSU later issued a statement defending the actions of the campus police officer, claiming that his inaction was justified “so as to not escalate a potentially unsafe situation.”

Xavier Becerra, Whittier College

October 2017
Whittier College

Pro-Trump protestors exercised their “heckler’s veto” by constantly interrupting and shouting insults at California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and California Assembly Majority Leader Ian Calderon at a public Q&A event hosted at Whittier College. The event was intended to be a 60-minute session but had to be cut short at 34 minutes due to the protestor’s actions. Apparently, the protest was organized to respond to Becerra’s lawsuit against the Trump administration’s decision to discontinue the federal DACA program.