After Hale and a supporter were
verbally and physically harrassed
by a few individuals not members of the campus community, he was
escorted off campus.
A group of students protested Hale’s
appearance as an incitation
to violence and public disorder. "Free speech is not an issue,"
organizers stated. But Hale had made it an issue. "If I'm so
wrong, why can't people show me, not just black me out or attack
me physically?" he asked. A local member of the NAACP responded
by requesting that Hale talk to his group. Apparently Hale did
not do so. Could anyone "show" Hale he was wrong?
University officials thought that
whatever the free speech issues
involved, they were secondary to public safety: in 1999, a
leading member of his Church, Benjamin Smith, shot at Black,
Asian-American and Jewish people, killing one and injuring
several. At its inception, the WCC called for a “racial holy war”
against the “mud races.” Hale has disavowed violence, but he has
not repudiated Smith, and has described him as a “First Amendment
The University also pointed to its
right, as a private
institution, to determine who uses campus facilities and for what
purpose. Private property is not a public forum and may not be so
used without permission. First Amendment provisions do not apply
as they would at a public institution.
The university president asked the
Northwestern community to
boycott any talk Hale gave near campus. The president, and a
rabbi, state that ignoring Hale is the best defense against
legitimatizing his philosophy. Forums are held, not to make
people hate Hale but to energize them to recognize and deplore
his ideas and his presence.