Boston University has taken egregeous steps to limit the number of people able to attend an appearance of conservative commentator Ben Shapiro.
The Boston University Young Americans for Freedom Club (YAF) secured Shapiro to speak at their school during the fall semester, but school officials have hampered the event by limiting the number of attendees to more than half of what was planned and charging the student group nearly $13,000 in “security” costs.
A list of “severely limiting criteria” was sent to YAF from Assistant Dean of Students John Battaglino, according to a post on the YAF website.
“Rather than hosting Shapiro—as planned—in a venue that holds 1,500 people, Boston University administrators are requiring BU YAF to use a venue that seats just 700,” Spencer Brown, spokesperson for the group, wrote in the article. “In addition to this absurd restriction that more than halved the number of students able to hear Shapiro speak, Battaglino informed BU YAF they’ll be on the hook for security fees totaling $12,720.”
Boston University officials cited “safety and security” concerns for exuberant fee charged to the organization. For the one hour event, officials stated they will need to secure 40 Boston University Police Department officers, 2 explosive ordnance disposal K9 units, 4 Boston University Police Department officers to direct traffic, and 16 security officers from a contracted security vendor.
“Boston University is requiring BU YAF to pay nearly $13,000 and cut the audience capacity in half,” said Diana Soriano, president of the Boston University Young Americans for Freedom. “We’re a bunch of college students who shouldn’t be put on the hook for what administrators are worried Antifa might do.”
In February, Shapiro taunted Boston University in a tweet bashing Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). Shapiro posted a quote from Ocasio-Cortez and wrote, “This person has an economics degree from Boston University. Revoke the university’s accreditation.”
This person has an economics degree from Boston University. Revoke the university’s accreditation. pic.twitter.com/zxG5XmyhF6— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) February 14, 2019