Brecken Branstrator, Daily Tar Heel (University of North Carolina), April 22, 2009
The UNC chapter of Youth for Western Civilization is trying again.
After former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo was not able to finish his speech last Tuesday due to protesters, the group has invited another former U.S. Representative, Virgil Goode, to speak on campus today.
In the past week, many on campus have spoken out against what they saw as a limit on free speech at Tancredo’s lecture. YWC leaders said they don’t know whether to expect protests today.
Goode, who represented Virginia from 1997 to 2008 as a Democrat, Independent and Republican, said he plans on speaking mostly about affirmative action and might discuss recent and future legislation surrounding the issue.
He has been an outspoken opponent of affirmative action during his career.
Riley Matheson, the president of the campus chapter of Youth for Western Civilization, said the group invited Goode because they agree with his opinions. The lecture has been planned for several weeks.
“At Youth for Western Civilization, we are not in favor of racial preferences,” Matheson said.
Flyers on The Daily Tar Heel stands label YWC as a white supremacist group and urge students to protest today.
Students for a Democratic Society, which planned a peaceful [sic!] protest last week, will also be protesting today’s speech, though group members said Tuesday they do not yet know the form it will take.
“We believe that the viewpoints we expect to be portrayed in Virgil Goode’s speech need to be spoken out against,” said member Steve Milder.
Members of the Carolina Hispanic Association, who wore all black in opposition to Tancredo’s speech, are not planning to protest today, said Alicia Soto, the group’s incoming president.
Goode and Tancredo often appear at public lectures at or around the same time because their views on immigration and affirmative action are similar, Matheson said. It is those similar opinions that cause some people to think more protesting will occur.
Randy Young, spokesman for the Department of Public Safety, said they are preparing for the speaker and will have many police officers at the speech but do not anticipate needing to take action.
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