Add Ohio State to the growing list of schools denying prominent white-supremacist Richard Spencer space to speak on its campus.
Spencer, president of the National Policy Institute, a white supremacist think tank, and co-editor of AltRight.com, was denied a request for space on campus for Oct. 12 or 24.
“The request was denied after the university determined that it is not possible to accommodate this request without substantial risk to public safety,” Ben Johnson, an Ohio State spokesman, said in a statement to The Lantern.
In a message sent Friday to notify Spencer of the denied request, Ohio State said, “After thoroughly assessing space options and resources and after consulting with law enforcement officials, the university determined that it is not possible to accommodate this request without substantial risk to public safety.
“Because of the substantial risk and our commitment to the safety of our campus community, the university is denying this request to rent space.”
Spencer is known for his racist ideology, use of anti-Semitic language and belief that America belongs solely to white men.
He also helped organize the Charlottesville, Virginia, far-right “Unite the Right” rally, which resulted in the deaths of three individuals.
Spencer announced a national university speaking tour a day after the Charlottesville rally. The press release, titled “Today Charlottesville, Tomorrow Texas A&M,” referenced his upcoming visit to College Station, Texas, which was subsequently canceled by the university.
Ohio State is at least the sixth reported university to deny Spencer a request for space. Other universities include Michigan State, Penn State and the University of Florida.
As a result of Michigan State denying his appearance, Spencer’s event organizer is suing the university in federal court on grounds of First Amendment violations.