Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
U.S. | By Vera Richards

Arrests as White Nationalist Speaks at Auburn

Arrests as White Nationalist Speaks at Auburn

Students told CNN that two people - a protester and a support of Mr. Spencer - were arrested after a fistfight erupted outside Tuesday's event, the network reported.

Auburn students got into shouting matches with a group of Spencer's supporters from the Traditionalist Worker Party - a white nationalist organization - wearing helmets and carrying shields. The video showed a portion of this crowd chanting, "No alt-right". "A bunch of snowflakes mostly women and betas were outside".

Citing safety concerns, the public university in eastern Alabama on Friday canceled a Spencer event that had been scheduled for Tuesday night.

Auburn University is on edge about a possible speech April 18th, 2017 by white nationalist Richard Spencer, whose inflammatory comments about race and religion have sparked protests at other schools where he has appeared.

An initial agreement between Cameron Padgett, who rented the facility for Spencer's talk, and the university included a $700 rental fee for the Foy auditorium and additional costs for security.

Auburn Police also released mugshots of the three people arrested outside the Spencer event.

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Auburn University itself was reportedly surprised by Spencer's arrival.

"I'm not talking to you", she said to the crowd.

The mere promise of divisive speakers like Spencer has previously ignited violent riots.

"I'm not going to allow that to happen", Spencer told the Plainsman, Auburn's student newspaper, after the cancellation announcement.

Spencer is president of the National Policy Institute, a think tank that proclaims to be "dedicated to the heritage, identity, and future of people of European descent in the United States, and around the world". "Auburn is engaging in a thinly disguised ideological litmus test by which those sharing its official views find their rights protected while those who challenge the Auburn views have their right to freedom of speech canceled base [sic] on some anonymous telephone threats".

The ruling by U.S. District Judge W. Keith Watkins came at a hearing in a lawsuit challenging Auburn's refusal to let the talk occur in the student union, as originally planned.

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