(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

The "alt-right" is having trouble finding places to meet these days

There's no space for Richard Spencer, the face of hate, on Penn State's campus


Alessandra Maldonado
August 22, 2017 5:43PM (UTC)

Conservative and "alt-right" organizations have been losing steam, as the deadly riots in Charlottesville have permanently stained their agenda. Preserving Confederate statues has proven to be a lost cause and apparently, so are white nationalist rallies.

On Tuesday, Pennsylvania State University announced Richard Spencer is not welcome to speak on their University Park campus because of "the recent violence and tragedy in Charlottesville."

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"I disagree profoundly with the content that has been presented publicly about this speaker's views which are abhorrent and contradictory to our University’s values," said university president Eric J. Barron in a statement. "There is no place for hatred, bigotry or racism in our society and on our campuses."

Barron explained the possibility of violence during Spencer's speech is the reason for the university's decision. "After critical assessment by campus police, in consultation with state and federal law enforcement officials, we have determined that Mr. Spencer is not welcome on our campus," Barron continued," as this event at this time presents a major security risk to students, faculty, staff and visitors to campus. It is the likelihood of disruption and violence, not the content, however odious, that drives our decision."

Spencer's ban from Penn State isn't the biggest hit the "alt-right" took this week. On Monday, the anti-Islamic group ACT for America announced the cancellation of 67 rallies in 36 states as a response to counter-protests "out of an abundance of caution."

"ACT for America is deeply saddened that in today’s divisive climate, citizens cannot peacefully express their opinion without risk of physical harm from terror groups domestic and international," the organization said in a statement.

In recent weeks, extremist and radical organizations in the United States and abroad have overrun peaceful events in order to advance their own agendas, and in many cases, violence has been the result. Given the security issues of organizing public events, the responsible decision is to deny this opportunity to Neo Nazis, Antifa, the KKK, and ISIS inspired individuals and groups. ACT for America's membership is patriotic citizens whose only goal is to celebrate America's values and peacefully express their views regarding national security.

Instead of their "Day of ACTion" rallies, ACT explained the protests will "be conducted through online and other media."

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League, ACT for America is classified as the country's largest anti-Muslim group, as reported by Newsweek. "ACT propagates the hateful conspiracy theory that Muslims are infiltrating U.S. institutions in order to impose Sharia law," said ADL on their site.

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The online day of action is planned for Sept. 9.


Alessandra Maldonado

Alessandra Maldonado is an editorial intern at Salon. You can find her on Twitter at @alessamberr

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