Campus radicalism and intolerance have become so virulent at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln that a former university official warned current administrators that the campus is no longer “safe” for conservatives.
Contrary to repeated assurances from university officials, internal emails show the UNL campus is not a welcoming environment for conservative students. When a records request submitted by Conservative Review threatened to make those emails public last week, school officials scrambled to address the anti-conservative bias of UNL faculty and staff and their hostility to free speech. That was almost three months after a campus incident captured national attention.
On August 25, the chapter president of a campus conservative group, Turning Point USA, was mercilessly harassed by professors. As Campus Reform reported, University of Nebraska-Lincoln sophomore Katie Mullen said at least two professors and a lecturer circled the group’s table yelling, “TPUSA Nazis” and “Fuck Charlie Kirk!” Kirk is the founder and executive director of Turning Point USA.
Turning Point USA captured video of lecturer Courtney Lawton, reportedly a member of the English department, holding a “Just say NO! to neo-fascism” sign, flipping off the camera, and yelling, “Neo-fascist Becky right here! Wants to destroy public schools, public universities, hates DACA kids.” “Becky” is slur with sexual connotations used against white women to mean “basic bitch.”
A second professor, Amanda Gailey, carried a sign that read “Turning Point: Please put me on your watchlist. Prof. Amanda Gailey.”
A later video shows Mullen being threatened with arrest by a school administrator for setting up her Turning Point USA table in an area that wasn’t a designated free speech zone.
Nearly three months later — when a Conservative Review public information request threatened to expose internal communications about the unsafe environment for conservatives on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus — school officials declined to release the documents promptly, citing “the extensive nature” of the request.
Instead, University of Nebraska President Hank Bounds preemptively sent copies of several damning internal emails to Gov. Pete Ricketts and the Nebraska legislature on Friday, Nov. 17. “These documents will be made public soon and I wanted you to receive them from me directly rather than hear about them from another source,” Bounds wrote in a letter to the governor.
Before the university fulfilled CR’s records request, copies of Bounds' letter and some of the requested documents were news-dumped to local media in Nebraska. The resulting stories were published late Friday afternoon before Thanksgiving week.
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