"The View" co-host Whoopi Goldberg took issue Thursday with "outside agitators" at the University of California, Berkeley, who turned a peaceful protest against a controversial alt-right speaker into a violent riot Wednesday night that led to fires and shattered windows and left at least five people with injuries.
"You know, I can't say this strongly enough," she told her co-hosts. "You can protest any speaker you want to, but the minute you get violent ... you say you're protesting because you want to protect people and then you go and burn people's stuff? What the hell, man?!"
— The View (@TheView) February 2, 2017
The protests, which were a reaction to a planned speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, an outspoken and controversial editor at Breitbart and member of the alt-right movement, reportedly started out peacefully. However, they soon turned violent Wednesday evening when some witnesses alleged an outside group showed up and escalated the gathering into a violent mob.
Goldberg said she supported the right of people to gather and protest but that she drew the line at the destruction of property and violence, and she offered an alternative to rioting:
If they want to invite [Yiannopoulos], that's fine, you don't have to go see him, you don't have to go see him. But you cannot — you can say, "We're going to protest; we can protest outside," 'cause you don't have to go in — but you don't have the right to destroy other people's stuff.
Her co-host Joy Behar, claiming to be the "first First Amendment person here," said she really believed in the right to free speech, but questioned why Berkeley would invite someone who many believe is racist, misogynist and little more than an "alt-right" provocateur.
"When I was in college, they really vetted people who were going to speak ... it wasn't just some troll on the internet, which is basically what this guy basically is," she said, adding, "Why'd they invite this guy?"
Behar went on to suggest that the protestors were infiltrated by outside agitators who were the cause of the violence.
"Listen, outside agitators," Goldberg countered, "you're not helping."