UW-Madison statement on Ben Shapiro lecture

November 16, 2016

Commentator Ben Shapiro was invited to speak on campus on Nov. 16 by a Registered Student Organization, the Young Americans for Freedom, UW–Madison Chapter.

The university worked to ensure the event would be safe and provide a forum for both the speaker and those dissenting with his statements to express their views, by meeting with organizers and protesters, along with providing security for the event.

UW-Madison has a long history of bringing speakers to campus who represent viewpoints across the political, social and cultural spectrum. Consistent with the university’s mission, such events offer a place to discuss critical societal issues and complement classroom learning.

We are dedicated to promoting a campus environment where all people feel valued and respected.  To that end, the university expects community members to engage in discussion, especially over controversial issues, in ways that are respectful of others’ viewpoints and that promote greater understanding. We are disappointed that some attendees at the event chose not to do so.