Letters to the Editor

Berkeley vigilantes

I’m a die hard Democrat who deplores the arguably nativist and certainly rabble-rousing rhetoric of Breitbart Magazine and its many acolytes.

But above my party affiliation, I am an even more ardent supporter of free-speech rights. Which is why I think what has taken place at UC-Berkeley university, first with Milo Yiannopoulos and now Ann Coulter, is a threat to both the free workings of democracy and the legitimate grievances Democrats might have.

Coulter is just as entitled to express her beliefs as the students who oppose her. In fact, she may be more deserving of the lectern, as she does so for a living. If students find her views anathema, just ignore her.

Using threats of unrest to stifle Coulter’s appearance, which will now take place in another venue, is counterproductive.

Her extremist views take on much greater currency when her right to express herself in public is denied.

Instead of being properly labeled as a radical, she becomes a martyr. If liberals are allowed to speak in more conservative venues without the threat of hysteria, the same privileges should be extended to Republicans.

So my suggestion to UC-Berkeley vigilantes is to wake up and smell the First Amendment.

Adrian Elman,

Miami Beach