Education & Academia

The Real Story Behind Ann Coulter’s UConn Speech

Last Wednesday, December 7, the Clare Booth Luce Policy Institute and the University of Connecticut College Republicans sponsored a lecture by HUMAN EVENTS Legal Affairs Correspondent Ann Coulter. Despite the fact that the liberal media portrayed Coulter’s lecture as being shut down, that’s not what happened.

Prior to the event, a few students squabbled over whether the college’s student fees should be used to pay for a “controversial” speaker. No one on campus opposed anti-war protestor and professional griever Cindy Sheehan’s invitation or $10,000 honorarium when she spoke earlier that same week. Of course, it is absurd to compare the two. Coulter is a lawyer, four-time New York Times bestselling author, syndicated columnist and intelligent debater. Sheehan is … not.

In below-freezing temperatures more than 2,500 students packed into UConn’s Jorgenson Auditorium to hear Coulter’s long-awaited speech and have a chance to spar with the conservative movement’s No. 1 woman during the question and answer session. She began talking amid a standing ovation from hundreds of students. Unfortunately, about 15 minutes into her speech, the South Park song, “Kyle’s mom is a big fat b****,” blared over the sound system. Some enterprising young liberals had hijacked the sound equipment. Since this is considered a method of torture and violation of the Geneva Convention, I expect Amnesty International representatives to arrive any day now. I hope UConn students aren’t offended by Tandori chicken.

After guaranteeing their future as the Left’s up-and-coming leaders, Coulter gave liberals in the audience their “two minutes of hate” and announced that she was going straight to the Q&A. “I love to engage in repartee with people that are a lot stupider than I am,” she said to the audience. “We’re having a question and answer right now with the little crybabies.”

Yet, the media chose to tell another story. WTIC-TV took huge liberties in its reporting when it claimed the event stopped 11 minutes into the speech. The station then cut to footage of students leaving the auditorium. The event didn’t end until much later and most of the 2,500 students in attendance stayed for the entire lecture and Q&A. The FOX station also conducted its "man on the street" interviews with leaders of two liberal campus organizations, the Progressive Student Alliance and Students Against Hate, which protested against the event from the beginning. Their affiliation was only listed by WTIC-TV as "UConn Student." In the Associated Press’ coverage, it’s not a coincidence that AP chose to use a photo of Ann Coulter signing a book for an older man rather than for a student. The book signing was organized by the College Republicans and most of the 120 in attendance were students.

In reality, Coulter used her wit to disarm the hecklers. She conversed with the audience for more than 30 minutes, more than what was scheduled. One boy obnoxiously asked, “What do you think of premarital sex?” Coulter responded, “Honestly, that’s the worst pick-up line I’ve ever heard.”

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Despite their attempts and false media accounts of the lecture, it was the hecklers in the audience who were angered, agitated and storming away from the microphone. In How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Must), Coulter wrote, “People don’t get angry when lies are told about them; they get angry when the truth is told about them.”

What happened at UConn last week is not a new phenomenon. For years conservatives have battled a repertoire of name-calling, teach-ins, protests and projectiles. Judging from the four or five snot-nosed kids protesting at UConn, their mainstay now is the Hitler mustache. Liberals must wake up every day and thank Hitler’s barber for providing enough material to sustain them for the past 65 years.

Conservative speakers such as Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, David Horowitz, Bay Buchanan and Ward Connerly continue to put themselves in the lion’s den because of the support they receive from thousands of college students and in spite of the cowardly loudmouths in the back of the room. Many of them travel with close protection bodyguards because they want to continue speaking out in support of conservative principles and the War on Terrorism. Conservative students are desperate for intellectual diversity, so they stand up to the administration, their liberal professors and fellow students with a rebellious spirit, creativity and a sense of humor. Liberals’ rants are no match for affirmative-action bake sales at numerous colleges, Clothe-A-Feminist Day (in response to a protest led by naked feminists) at the University of North Texas and Coming Out [as a conservative] Week at Drake University. Repartee with Ann Coulter is just kicking them when their down. It’s really not a fair fight.

Conservative students are winning on college campuses. In addition to their efforts, they have a number of outstanding organizations such as Young America’s Foundation, the Leadership Institute, the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute, Students for Academic Freedom and the Intercollegiate Studies Institute to encourage them along the way. Liberal students have the Hitler mustache and their poorly drawn swastikas.

UConn liberals made a spectacle of themselves last Wednesday night. Though their tactics were ineffective in getting Ann Coulter to leave the stage, they deprived their fellow students from hearing the end of an interesting and thought-provoking speech. Instead, the majority of the students laughed along with Coulter at their fellow students. It was similar to the “worst auditions” episode of "American Idol." Those at the microphones were emotional, pitiful and angry — and also oblivious to the laughing observers.

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