In response to the shameful events in Charlottesville over the weekend, Texas A&M decided to cancel a White Lives Matter rally that was scheduled to take place on September 11. In a vacuum, the decision certainly has some merit given the events that transpired in Virginia, and the university cited the following reason for canceling: “because of concerns about the safety of its students, faculty, staff, and the public.”
It seems simple enough. The most recent equivalent to a White Lives Matter rally resulted in violence, and for most media outlets, this is where the reporting stops. But what about Texas A&M allowing a Black Lives Matter rally in September of 2016?
While the Black Lives Matter rally was scheduled to be peaceful, it occurred at a time when Black Lives Matter rallies were starting peaceful then erupting in violence all over the country. In the months leading up to the September 2016 Black Lives Matter rally at Texas A&M, the following Black Lives Matter rallies turned violent:
So while the “safety concerns” reason seems plausible, it’s not consistent with the university’s prior decision to allow the Black Lives Matter rally to proceed. To spell out their logic, they allowed a Black Lives Matter rally to proceed despite multiple prior rallies turning violent, some even more violent than the recent events in Charlottesville, but they cancelled a White Lives Matter rally on the basis of one prior rally turning violent. Not to point out the obvious, but this decision making process makes zero sense. If they didn’t want the rally for some other reason, then they should have simply stated that reason and not hid behind a hypocritical reasoning.
To be clear, I completely agree with the university’s decision to allow the Black Lives Matter rally last September. The ability to organize and freely speak about issues is a right that makes this country great, but unfortunately, Texas A&M decided to deny that right to another group due to some severely flawed logic.
I truly hope Texas A&M isn’t taking the same approach as many other universities – everyone is entitled to free speech, unless the university doesn’t agree with the speech. This same approach happens to be the same stance that many fascist and communist dictators have taken over the years, and I shouldn’t have to tell you that it doesn’t work well for average citizens.