American Enterprise Institute scholar Charles Murray was disinvited from speaking at Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts, over concerns that antifa protesters would cause chaos.
Reports out of Massachusetts have revealed that Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts, rescinded a speaking engagement offer to American Enterprise Institute scholar Charles Murray, which was originally scheduled to take place a week after his chaotic event at Middlebury College that took place in March.
Most importantly, the college claims that they didn’t withdraw the offer on the basis of Murray’s writings but rather because they felt unequipped to handle the potential violence that could erupt if groups like anti-fa showed up to demonstrate.
The invitation to Assumption came a week after the Middlebury appearance; it was withdrawn only this week. Spokespeople for both the American Enterprise Institute and Assumption College said the issue was not about Mr. Murray’s research, views or books and his freedom to speak but over the small school’s ability to assure student and community safety given concerns expressed by state, local and campus law enforcement over outside groups that might attempt to disrupt the event and each other.
Murray was invited to Assumption by Professor Bernard Dobski and told Campus Reform that he viewed the cancellation as proof that “groups like Antifa that the mere threat of their tactics is enough to cow us into submission.”
Dobski, the Chair of the Political Science Department at Assumption, argued that hosting Murray would help Assumption separate itself from peer institutions that are less friendly to upholding speech principles. “At a time when competition among colleges over a shrinking student population is fierce, the decision to have Dr. Murray on our campus would distinguish us from so many of our regional peers,” Dobski argued.
Professor Dobski claims that he initially had support from the Assumption administration, nothing that even the college’s president encouraged him to move forward with the event. Eventually, the college president changed his mind, citing concerns over the potential safety risks that would be posed by “But he ultimately insisted that his first priority must be the safety of both the students and our guests, and that in light of information shared with him by state, city, and local police regarding potential off-campus threats, he thought it best to cancel the lecture,” he said.