Being a person of means at UC Berkeley is hard enough as it is. Many of us are forced to keep silent during political discussions for fear that, if we express our true opinions, we’ll be shunned by our peers. Those who do speak out are confronted and mocked to our faces for daring to challenge the crushing leftist orthodoxy and say politically incorrect things like “I shouldn’t have to pay taxes,” “Public roads are communism,” and “Military dictatorships are good, actually.”
But these attacks on our free speech don’t just come from our fellow students. They come from UC Berkeley itself. And if you need proof, just look at what happened last Friday, when campus officials refused to let our organization host an event in Pauley Ballroom, even though we posted flyers all over campus and made a Facebook event for it.
Yes, we did not inform campus officials that we would be hosting this event before we started promoting it. Yes, we failed to submit any paperwork in advance indicating that we wanted to use the room. But such details are irrelevant, mere technicalities used to silence and discredit us for our political incorrectness. We condemn the Daily Californian, The Free Peach, and all other student-run organizations that spread fake news by calling Dan Mogulof on the phone, asking him what the university’s official response to this situation was, and reporting exactly what he said.
It is the responsibility of this school to let any organization host events anytime, anywhere on campus at a moment’s notice, and failure to do so is a violation of the First Amendment, the Non-Aggression Principle, and our very civil rights—which, we notice, the university always jumps to defend for other marginalized groups, but never people like us, who are told to suffer in silence whenever we’re called slurs like “privileged,” “snob,” and worst of all, “billionaire.” And while it is true that anyone is allowed to go to Upper Sproul and speak their mind without having to get it cleared with the university, our cause is too noble to settle for such conditions and cannot afford to be sabotaged by students and other passersby walking up and forcing us to intellectually defend our positions.
All we ask is the platform we deserve: three hours in a massive room right on the edge of campus on a Friday night at 8 pm, where an inflammatory Breitbart contributor will be allowed to speak unchallenged about how letting poor people vote is fascism and anyone who disagrees should be thrown out of a helicopter. We also reserve the right to complain about how UCPD handles the situation, even if the university spends a million dollars on protecting our event and the event goes completely as planned, and to blame any violence that occurs on ANTIFA, which we will conflate with the UC Berkeley student body as recklessly as possible, even if the instigator turns out to be a Neo-Nazi in his mid-40’s who drove all the way up from Bakersfield specifically to use our event as an excuse to break things and start street fights.
If Chancellor Christ does not rectify this situation immediately and give us exactly what we want, we will complain on Twitter while tagging as many conservative talking heads as possible until one of them hears about our cause and regurgitates our narrative wholesale for a national audience of old white Republicans in the Midwest who are addicted to getting mad at people they’ve never met. And if that somehow doesn’t work, be warned: my dad is a lawyer, and he will sue the entire University of California system for this discrimination and censorship. It is our right as people of means to dominate the campus discourse, even if no one asked us to join it in the first place, and one way or another, our voices will be heard.
Jayonnaise Rutherford III is the founder and president of Fiat Divitiis USA, a right-wing activist nonprofit organization based in Morris County, New Jersey. He does not attend UC Berkeley.