TO THE EDITOR:
I would like to thank The Daily Tar Heel for its editorial on Sept. 14 regarding Haley Koch’s protest of Tom Tancredo’s speech (“Protesters be warned”).
I am not an authority on the topic, by any means, but a simple reading of The Instrument of Student Judicial Governance for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill proves explicitly why protesters like Koch cannot be tolerated.
“It is the responsibility of the students to conduct themselves so as not to impair significantly the welfare or the educational opportunities of others in the University community” (Section II. A. 4.).
Students are also cautioned to not to “engage in conduct or inciting others to engage in conduct that improperly restrains freedom of speech, assembly or access to premises or activities by any individual who is a member of the University community.” (Section II. C. 1. l.).
To me, the facts seem objectively clear; the protesters at the Tancredo event clearly disrupted and forcibly ended the speech. Whether or not the issue they protested should have been protested in the first place is another matter entirely.
What should be remembered is the fact that the way this protest was handled (with shouting, chanting and rock-throwing) was clearly a violation of conduct.
Therefore, it should be handled as such in order to maintain the integrity of free speech we are allowed at UNC.
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