Cal State Fullerton students in the College Republicans club erupted in cheers on Tuesday when President Brooke Paz announced that speaker Dave Rubin is set to speak on Jan. 29, 2019 in the Titan Student Union Pavilion for a Q&A event. The contract with Rubin has been signed, Paz said.
“The CSUF Republicans have a reputation for fostering intellectual diversity and civil discourse,” Paz said in a press release. “We intend to continue that legacy with our speaker next semester, and Dave Rubin is the perfect person to represent those values.”
The announcement comes a little more than a year after speaker Milo Yiannopoulos was invited by the College Republicans. The event led to protestors clashing with police in riot gear and resulting in a security cost of approximately $90,000.
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Andrew Flores, Students for Quality Education member, said he was not familiar with who Rubin was when he was first announced as the speaker, but thought he was a less controversial speaker than Yiannopoulos.
“I think the general consensus will be a little more relieved of a much smaller police presence because of who they decided to bring,” Flores said. “As far as Milo, quite frankly, we did not have that money. We did not have that $90,000 to put forth on that speaker, regardless if they are controversial or not.”
The cost of Rubin’s appearance has not been disclosed by the College Republicans.
Several areas on campus were closed down the day of Yiannopoulos’ appearance, including the State College parking structure and the Student Recreation Center. Fencing also surrounded the recreation center and the Titan Student Union.
Paz said she believed Rubin’s appearance on campus would result in a less crazy atmosphere on campus in comparison to Yiannopoulos’ appearance. Following Yiannopoulos’ speaking event last year, eight protestors were detained, one person was arrested and several people ended up with pepper spray in their eyes.
“We did the very controversial, exciting thing before, and that was fun, but I think that this one is going to be a bit more substantive, and I think that’s a good route to go to kind of balance it out,” Paz said.
In the meeting, Paz described Rubin as someone who is not their typical College Republican speaker.
Rubin is a “classical liberal,” political commentator and comedian who hosts a show on YouTube known as the “Rubin Report,” a talk show about free speech and other polarizing ideas.
According to his website, Rubin has firmly set himself apart from the modern day Democratic Party due to “taking political correctness and groupthink to a dangerous level.” He attributes his original political affiliation as a “left-leaning progressive” to his identity as a gay married man.
Now, he believes people should embrace their individuality and refrain from taking sides in parties.
“He felt like he had to identify with liberals, and as he was getting more individualistic in his ideas, he saw there was a lot of backlash, and I think a lot of students on campus feel the same way,” Paz said.
Paz also encourages students who may not agree with Rubin to attend the Q&A to voice their opinions and engage in civil discourse.
“Even though he is more on the left he does get a lot of backlash from the left. I’m sure we’ll still have some people who disagree,” Paz said.
Tickets can be purchased on Eventbrite at $25 for students and $30 for non-students.
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