McWilliams: Student fees shouldn’t be used to bring Dennis Prager to CSU

Leta McWilliams

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by The Collegian or its editorial board.

It was announced that Dennis Prager would be coming to Colorado State University’s campus, hosted by Turning Point USA, to discuss his ideologies on Oct. 29.

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The last thing many students at CSU want is their student fees to be used to bring a racist homophobic speaker to campus. ASCSU approved it anyways. 

Prager is known to be extremely problematic, especially in regards to race. Prager co-founded a non-profit organization called PragerU in 2009.

The website is filled with racist content, including a video discussing the Black Card and how people of color manipulate those around them by using it for their own gain. Almost 30 percent of undergraduates at CSU are people of color, so bringing Prager and these ideas to campus is marginalizing over 7,000 undergraduates. 

Prager is also known for having homophobic views, stating “every religious and non-religious tradition, every major moral thinker in history, not one of them in any tradition in history has ever advocated for changing the definition of marriage … I want gays to have every right, however redefining marriage is not called for.” This is not only a contradicting statement, but it is also extremely homophobic. Prager also stated that same sex marriage could lead to polygamy and incest.

Many current and former CSU students discussed their frustrations towards ASCSU for bringing Prager to the university. Luce Stone, a junior anthropology major and employee at the Women and Gender Advocacy Center, was the first to speak about Prager’s upcoming visit. 

“Free speech and debate are key parts of college campuses, but do we want to host a speaker that actively wishes harm towards people of marginalized identities?” Stone asked. “Is engaging in debate worth risking the safety and well-being of our queer, Muslim and female students, especially with the events of the Charlie Kirk event last spring, which brought neo-Nazis to campus?”

Many other students spoke out against TPUSA hosting Prager on campus. However, in the name of freedom of speech and since the event does not break any of their bylaws, ASCSU approved TPUSA’s request, and continues to disregard the fears of students.

TPUSA is also known to be extremely problematic. They’ve been known to stalk left-leaning students online, document and film what they’re doing on and off campus and doxing them. They consistently make those against their ideologies feel unsafe through scare tactics and intimidation strategies. TPUSA is the same organization that brought Charlie Kirk to CSU last year, making many students feel unsafe.

After the Kirk event hosted last year, many students on campus want nothing to do with this event. The event brought white nationalist and neo-Nazi groups to CSU’s campus, putting students in danger and requiring police to be at the Lory Student Center.

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In the name of free speech, people like Prager should be able to come to CSU. However, the event should not be funded by student fees. Turning Point USA is once again putting students in danger by bringing someone so problematic to campus, and is doing so by using the money from those they are harming.

Leta McWilliams can be reached at letters@collegian and online at @LetaMcWilliams