Richard Spencer has moved from fascist ideologue to most hated person in the country as he targets college campuses. Spencer has relied heavily on state institutions to protect his access to public venues since private locations, such as hotels or conference centers, are often more vulnerable to organized public pressure. Since 2016, and later with the platform denial the Alt Right faced after Charlottesville, Spencer has had a plan to exploit the loopholes in policies at publicly funded universities (Which are actually funded by massive fees and tuition that students are straddled with debt to pay.). He will make bogus “free speech” claims to force his way onto campus at the cost of students, which he has successfully done at Texas A&M, the University of Florida, and others.
Next is Michigan State, which he was able to secure despite organized student antifascist pressure because of lawsuits put forward by white nationalist attorney, and Michigan State alumni, Kyle Bristow. Cameron Padgett was the person who issued the lawsuit against MSU for denying him the ability to manipulate the school’s facilities. After months of fighting, the day is finally coming where Richard Spencer will be speaking at Michigan State and bringing a bevy of angry and violent white nationalists with him.
On March 5th, 2018, Spencer will be speaking at the Pavilion for Agriculture and Livestock Education, on the southern edge of the campus. The choice to hold it at this facility on the outskirts of campus seems to be a method by the administration to hold back the inevitable conflict between antifascists and white nationalists in attendance. There is also a counter-event being held at the All Saints Episcopal Church on Abbot Road in East Lansing a ways away, which is really an attempt to draw protesters away from the campus so that the university can make this go as quietly as possible. While events like the “Celebration of Diversity Festival” are not bad on their face, they act as a safety valve to negate actual resistance that is happening at the point of contact.
Stop Spencer at Michigan State University, formed by antifascist students and community members in response to the white nationalist event, are planning the protest action right at the facility where Spencer will be speaking. Students across the Michigan State University system have been protesting since last year, arranging student walkouts at universities and communities colleges while the administration were in negotiations with Spencer’s people about the potential of a large white nationalist event.
There are now protests planned both in East Lansing and Ann Arbor (Click here for all the logistics information, how to get there, the Facebook event, and the transportation and parking info).
Spencer’s March 5th event will likely draw a large crowd of white nationalists and neo-Nazis, especially considering there is an Alt Right conference nearby in Detroit on March 4th. The StopSpencer coalition has put the below instructions for the event:
People in East Lansing are expecting hundreds of people out on the streets, including students, community members, staff, and faculty. The fascists are going to be rolling into town the morning of March 5th from Detroit, after attending an Alt-Right conference the day before, on March 4th.
The actual speaking event is scheduled to take part inside a room which is located within the MSU Pavilion for Agriculture and Livestock Education from 4:30-6:30 PM. The area surrounding the pavilion is largely farmland and golf courses, and moreover, there are only several entrances into the Pavilion off of two main roads. In short, we want to flood the area with people – to shut down the Alt-Right in its tracks.
On our end, we will be mobilizing up the road at a set of large parking lots, which are located at Farm Lane and Mt. Hope Road. Parking is free, and this convergence point is located less than half a mile from the campus.
It is critical to show resistance on Monday, to make sure that campuses will not be an incubator for violent white nationalists and to make them centers for antifascist resistance. Come out and join the movement!