Planning a high-profile event at any university is a difficult yet noteworthy feat, especially when the event occurs during a week where many liberals, anti-Semites, and communists were also invited to speak. Although this was my first time planning a speaking engagement, hosting David Horowitz at the University of California, San Diego proved to be a very successful event despite some obstacles.
First I reached out to various groups at UCSD to support David Horowitz’s speaking event. Our problems arose when one of the three student groups initially excited to cosponsor the event had to pull out their funding at the last minute. The board members of this group had voted to pitch in to help Young Americans for Freedom and our other co-sponsoring group pay the fee for the speaker. However their funding was cut, and YAF now shared dual sponsorship with the College Republicans. As a member of all three groups, I still felt inclined to offer our support during “Apartheid Week” and found a way to get Mr. Horowitz to come speak nevertheless.
Once he arrived at UCSD, Mr. Horowitz went on a tour of the campus to see what had changed since he had last come to visit. He was particularly interested in viewing the “Apartheid Wall” erected by the Students for Justice in Palestine and Muslim Students’ Association. The wall spanned one hundred feet by ten to twelve feet in height on Library Walk, the thoroughfare on campus. When observing the wall filled with its nuances and its false, incriminating lies about Israel and the Jewish people, Horowitz and his assistants were greatly appalled and disgusted by the information presented. When the time came for Horowitz to lecture to UCSD and the outside community, the night quickly became more interesting and eventful.
In his speech entitled, “The Second Holocaust and Its Surrounding Neighbors,” Mr. Horowitz discussed Israel’s problems and its uphill battle against what Mr. Horowitz calls “Islamo-fascism.” He renamed apartheid week “Hitler Youth Week,” as he drew a parallel between anti-Israel sentiment on campus to the youth involved in Hitler’s Final Solution. Mr. Horowitz’s speech went uninterrupted, as most people who were opposed to him were attending Norman Finkelstein’s alternative speaking engagement that was being held at the same time. Moreover, many people with dissenting views hijacked many tickets at the Price Center Box Office by reserving them and then declining to show up. However, the most interesting and equally frightening part of the night was the Question and Answer session.
First Mr. Horowitz received a question from a female member of the audience about the MSA at UCSD, who was a former officer of that organization. Mr. Horowitz initially responded to the question by turning the tables on the girl. He asked her if she was willing to condemn Hamas whereby she stated that she was unwilling to do so. After proving his point, Mr. Horowitz continued on with his answer to the question, when the girl interrupted him and told him that he didn’t understand the situation in which his question put her. Horowitz then tried to simplify the situation for the girl by recalling a quote from the founder of Hizbollah. Horowitz paraphrased the quote whereby the founder of Hizbollah calls for the gathering of the Jews in Israel so it would be easier to kill them all. Mr. Horowitz once more turned the tables and asked the girl if she was “for it” or “against it”. She responded “for it.”
This chilling experience on campus shows that anti-Semitism still exists. Many people argue that what this girl said is protected by free speech; however, I do not remember the First Amendment allowing Americans to incite physical violence against other groups. She also made several statements in her defense, and refused to apologize in all of them. She even attempted to hide how much money that the Associated Students at UCSD gave to fund the event. In addition, some people called on for me to stop efforts to expose and punish this girl because they feel that a less intense approach would be better. However, I’m not ashamed of being outspoken as a conservative activist. Heck, more people should have the courage to do so! I’m not going to be moderate to appease to anyone, sorry. What I am ashamed of is the University’s hypocrisy in refusing to condemn her remarks. I am being purposely vague when I say that more will come out of this event. In conclusion, I have no regrets in bringing David Horowitz to UCSD, and I’m proud to have had Young Americans for Freedom, Young America’s Foundation, and the College Republicans at UCSD to help make this possible.
*** Editors Note: This article was initially supposed to be printed two weeks ago however we were unable to get a second issue out before the end of the year.