Matt Walsh of the Daily Wire has now been blocked twice from speaking at St. Louis University (SLU) in Missouri.
The Daily Wire reports that the school originally claimed that the event would be canceled if seemingly random COVID-19 precautions were not followed, but after moving the speech’s location to a church “intimately close” with SLU, Walsh was told Tuesday that his speech would be canceled, since the church claimed that some of Walsh’s views were supposedly inconsistent with Roman Catholic teaching.
Walsh had been invited earlier this year to speak on December 1st by SLU’s Young America’s Foundation and College Republicans Club. Walsh originally planned to hold his talk, titled “Why the Pro-Life Movement Is Center Stage In The Culture War,” in the Wool Ballroom of the Busch Student Center.
However, in early November, YAF students released a video titled “What Is a Woman?”, which was meant to mock a leftist group that complained that a pro-abortion event held by a group called the SLU Sluts was too feminine, and that it was transphobic to only feature women who wanted abortions because anyone could be pregnant. Walsh often asks advocates of the transgender movement to define the word “woman,” which is what led YAF to title their video as such.
The video united leftist students to protest YAF, College Republicans and Walsh’s upcoming speech, demanding that Walsh be disinvited from campus. Walsh then decided he wanted to talk about trans issues instead of the pro-life movement, and, after the school insisted that Walsh stick to his original subject that he was approved to speak about, the conservative groups relented.
Later, in mid-November, school administrators told the clubs that 90% of audience members had to be vaccinated, and social distancing and mask requirements would have to be in place for Walsh’s speech. WAF club president Nicholas Baker says that these COVID policies seemed arbitrary and were likely different from the school’s previous policies and policies pertaining to other speakers who held events in that same location. But school administrators insisted, and the speech was moved to a new location after Walsh refused to obey.
The clubs were able to secure St. Francis Xavier College Church for Walsh’s talk, which is closely affiliated with SLU and does not have similar COVID rules. But, in emails obtained by the Daily Wire, the priest who approved Walsh’s speech told the clubs that, after reviewing his previous videos and commentary, he decided that Walsh’s “content regarding immigration, communities of color, Muslims and other important topics is not in keeping with who we are as a parish and as part of the Catholic Church,” and that the speech would need to be canceled.
YAF is now searching for a new venue to hold Walsh’s speech.
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