Campus Free Speech

Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle Will Receive $50,000 to Speak at the University of Florida

"We are confident that all members of the university community will demonstrate the highest ideals of our university."

|

The University of Florida (UF) speakers bureau has invited Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle—a political strategist, former Fox News host, and girlfriend of Don Jr.—to speak on campus later this month.

Many progressive students are not happy about it, and this time it's a little easier to see where they are coming from. That's because the couple will receive $50,000—and the students are footing the bill.

The University of Florida has something called the ACCENT Speakers Bureau, which is part of the student government. The bureau collects mandatory fees from students, then uses this money to hire speakers to come to campus. According to its website, ACCENT is "the largest student-run speakers bureau in the nation. It has been part of campus for over 40 years and has provided the University of Florida with a plethora of big names, including past Presidents, Prime Ministers, media moguls, business leaders and sports legends."

Some students are now discussing ways to disrupt the event, or at the very least prevent others from attending it, Campus Reform reports.

UF's administration put out a statement in defense of ACCENT's right to bring the speakers to campus and urging the students to be civil in response:

The University, in its statement on freedom of expression, has committed itself to ensuring that a wide variety of viewpoints are heard on campus as well as to protecting the First Amendment rights of all those in attendance. The University believes it is an essential component of its academic mission to foster an environment where divergent ideas, opinions and philosophies, new and old, can be rigorously discussed and critically evaluated.

To maintain this environment, the University strives to ensure that individuals are treated with respect. At the same time, the University recognizes the right of members of its community to analytically and respectfully challenge ideas so long as such challenges are conducted in a civil manner that does not stifle the open expression of the opposing ideas. Thus, such challenges must not interfere with speakers' ability to speak or with their audience's ability to hear the speakers.

UF is a public university, and thus its administration is correct to insist that invited persons be allowed to speak there, even if these persons hold views that are anathema to some students.

But it's one thing to allow speech. It's another to force students to subsidize it.

That's what the mandatory fees are for, of course, and as long as the student government is in the business of collecting them, it should use them to fund an ideologically diverse range of speakers. But I can't really fault students for balking at their fees being spent in this manner.

It's hard to argue against the position taken by student Zachariah Chou in the student newspaper:

I understand that many of these people have been invited to share perspectives not often heard, and to debate ideas worth being debated on a liberal college campus.

But if you asked me what I thought of Trump Jr. coming to campus, I'd probably respond by saying I wish Ben Shapiro was coming back for round two instead.

I get that universities are supposed to be like Candyland for free speech and stuff, but I really take issue with Trump Jr. coming to campus.

Compared to some of the other conservative speakers SG has brought to campus, Trump Jr. has little to sell in the marketplace of ideas.

The fees of conservative speakers are sometimes paid by outside groups or alumni. And in some cases, either the group or the university must pay obscene security costs—essentially a fine imposed by illiberal students who want these kinds of event shut down. In the UF case, though, students are being specifically obligated to subsidize speech by two people who are most notably Trump campaign operatives. If ever there was a case for abolishing such student fees, this feels like it.

Advertisement

NEXT: Elizabeth Warren's Labor Plan Would Be Terrible For Workers

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. So if I’m reading the article right, it’s been 40 years of compelled subsidization of speech but no reason to complain about it or to write about it until Trump.

    Even though I agree with the underlying point, your timing does not help your credibility.

    1. Perhaps no one has proposed spending $50,000 on such undistinguished oration before?

      1. Hillary has a long history of paid speeches .

        1. And Lizzie Borden Warren

          $300K to speak at Georgetown and rail against student loan debt.

          1. Gotta launder that dirty money somehow.

      2. >>>such undistinguished oration

        dunno, that’s a helluva mouth

      3. Why?
        How much did they offer you?

      4. Didn’t bother to read the published list of other speakers, did you.

    2. Rossani … whiny Trumpster … knows what Robby has been writing for (my guess) longer than he’s been alive!!.

      They KNOW Trump is going down. TODAY we have actual, diplomatic texts of the Administration pressuring Ukraine to investigate the bat-shit crazy Biden conspiracy. Can any (honest) observer doubt that the same pressure will be used to get a phony conviction?

      Even though I agree with the underlying point, your timing does not help your credibility.

      Your entire comment destroys your credibility. Is he supposed to wait until Trump is out of office??? Must everyone?

      1. How were your Cocoa Puffs today?

        1. Tell me what you challenge, whiny child.

      2. The texts thati literally say no pid pro quo?

        1. You are full of shit on the texts. Loser.

          1. Download texts. Cntrl-f “pid pro qou’s”. Report back to the class.

            1. REPEAT: “You are full f shit on the texts, loser .
              NOW full of sht on “PID pro quo” … which does not exist. (sneer)

              Quid pro quo is a Latin phrase that literally means “something for something.”. The phrase usually indicates an exchange of goods or services of roughly equivalent value.

              The 7 most explosive exchanges in Trump’s Ukraine envoy texts

              Will he continue stalking me ,… NON-STOP fuckups?

      3. Huh. Who’s responsible for federal law enforcement? The executive branch. Now, who’s in charge of the executive branch?
        Ok, now, who’s responsible for foreign diplomacy? That’s right, once again it’s the executive branch, with the same person in charge.
        So, what, exactly, is illegal about the president asking a foriegn country for help in an investigation? The fact that one of the characters in the investigation is running for president? Or is the left going bat shit insane because their entire criminal conspiracy (much of what happened with the “collusion” of the democrats 2016 campaign and parts of the Ukrainian government) is about to be exposed?

        1. ^^^
          This.
          What the fuck?
          Who else is gonna investigate corruption in Ukraine? Mueller?

          1. Do me a favor and announce to the world that you put my political opponent under a criminal investigation. Trump is going down for this. It may take him losing an election or the Republicans may wait up but this will go before a grand jury.

            1. Umm… what do you think happened the last 2.5 years based solely on oppo research? Perry by the Austin D.A. Steven’s a decade ago.

              Are you fucking retarded? You dont get a get out if jail card because you’re elected dumbass.

        2. Oh Trump is entitled to announce that he wants the FBI to investigate his political opponents and he can give the FBI all the trash backwards crap he thinks proves Biden committed a crime. What he can’t do legally is secretly pressure a foreign govt to announce an investigation. That’s corruption and the Ukrainian President said it himself. In the Ukraine Presidents don’t decide which cases are prosecuted and which are not. That job is done by a professional police force. In Republican Banana Republics on the other hand Presidents decide who is or isn’t investigated. Trump is going to prison when this over.

          1. So, you’re just making shit up? The Democrats used Ukranian help to send the nation on a 3 year wild goose chase, during which much of the leadership of the CIA and FBI broke numerous laws in order to affect an unconstitutional coup. But, yeah, it’s illegal to investigate and chicanery by the Democrats; only Republicans can be investigated for illegal acts.

          2. Also, you obviously have no idea of how our government is structured. The President can, legally, order any investigation started, changed, or stopped, because the president is, wait for it… the head of the Executive branch, and all executive authority is vested in him- not the FBI, not the DOJ- the president.

    3. You read it right.

    4. What credibility?
      After decades of “political correctness”, conservative speakers are invited to campus and that makes it appropriate to criticize?

      Robby Soave has no credibility.

  2. “But I can’t really fault students for balking at their fees being spent in this manner.”

    They were apparently ok with it up until now…

    1. It would be nice to see a list of the other speakers their fees subsidized. Guessing you’ll get some real doozies.

      1. Some highlights:

        The cast of The Real World New Orleans
        Ellen Degeneres
        Andy Richter
        Bill Bye
        The amazing Kreskin

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ACCENT_Speakers_Bureau

        1. LOL
          Credibility denied.
          Don Jr and side piece are Nobel Laureates compared to that list

        2. Your list is a shameful lie. No surprise. You selected all lefties, and we know why.

          Here’s the actual list, posted solely to shame you.

          Aaron Karo
          Adam Carolla
          Adam Sandler
          Adam Savage
          Afeni Shakur
          Alan Dershowitz
          Alberto Gonzales
          Amir Sulaiman
          Andrew Card
          Andy Richter
          Andy Samberg
          Ann Coulter
          Anthony Rapp
          Ari Fleischer
          Ben Cohen
          Ben Shapiro
          Bill Clinton
          Bill Nye
          Blair Witch
          Bob Barr
          Bob Dole
          Bob Saget
          Bob Woodward
          Bobby Knight
          Brett Ratner
          Carl Hiaasen
          Chelsea Handler
          Chris Rock
          Christopher Reeve
          Coretta Scott King
          Dan Quayle
          Dan Senor
          Daniel Tosh
          Danny Coulson
          Danny Glover
          Dave Thomas
          Demetri Martin
          Dennis Kucinich
          Diablo Cody
          Dick Vitale
          Don King
          Don Shula
          Elie Wiesel
          Ellen DeGeneres
          Gary Hart
          Gene Simmons
          George Carlin
          George H.W. Bush
          George Pataki
          George Stephanopoulos
          Gerald Ford
          Greg Louganis
          Helen Prejean
          Howard Zinn
          Jack Kevorkian
          Jack Ong
          Jaleel White
          James Franco
          Jamie Hyneman
          Jane Goodall
          Janet Reno
          Jasmine Guy
          Jeremy Piven
          Jerry Greenfield
          Jesse Jackson
          Jimmy Carter
          Jim Wright
          Joe Wilson
          Joel Siegel
          John Kerry
          John Singleton
          Jose Canseco
          Josh Malina
          Kenan Thompson
          Kerri Strug
          Kevin Nealon
          Kurt Vonnegut
          Kweisi Mfume
          Kyle Maynard
          Laurie David
          Lewis Black
          Liz Murray
          Lou Ferrigno
          Loveline
          Magic Johnson
          Marcia Clark
          Margaret Cho
          Mark Sterner
          Martin Luther King III
          Matisyahu
          Max Weinberg
          Maya Angelou
          Mia Farrow
          Michael Che
          Michael Moore
          Michelle Kwan
          Mike Reiss
          Mikhail Gorbachev
          Mo Rocca
          Noam Chomsky
          Oliver North
          Oliver Stone
          Omar Al Issawi
          Pat Buchanan
          Patch Adams
          Paul Rudd
          Penn & Teller
          Queen Latifah
          Ralph Nader
          Randy Haveson
          Ray McGovern
          Real World New Orleans Cast
          Riki Wilchins
          Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
          Ron Jeremy
          Ronald Takaki
          Ross Perot
          Roy Firestone
          Ruth Westheimer
          Rupert Vanderpool
          Ruth Westheimer
          Sandra Bernhard
          Sarah Silverman
          Sarah Weington
          Scott Kelly
          Seth Meyers
          Sheryl Crow
          Sheryl Swoopes
          Sinbad
          Spike Lee
          Spitfire Tour
          Steve Forbes
          Steve Wozniak
          Susan Cole
          The Amazing Kreskin
          Terry Crews
          Tom Green
          Tom Wolfe
          Trevor Noah
          Valerie Plame Wilson
          Vladimir Posner
          Wesley Clark
          William Davis
          William Shatner
          Yitzak Rabin

          Even THAT is not complete. The first two speakers were Ralph Nader, followed by Richard Nixon (then VP)

          1. The shame comes from…what?

            Doesn’t seem to be my issue that you’re an illiterate script bot.

            1. The shame comes from…what?

              Already answered.

              As PROOF … NashTiger wa

          2. The person understood why you link to this shit instead of cutting and pasting. You are an idiot, so you did not.

          3. Yeah – with standouts Ron Jeremy, Sandra Bernhard and Janet Reno.

            Sheesh… if they let that lot in, why not Idi Amin?

        3. Ellen Degenerate?
          Kreskin (whom I only recall because I heard about him when I was a tot.
          The rest? Is that supposed to be Bill Nye (the fake science guy)?

          1. ANOTHER ONE!!

            1) HE LIED ABOUT THE SPEAKERS LIST
            https://reason.com/2019/10/04/donald-trump-jr-kimberly-guilfoyle-university-of-florida/#comment-7959631

            2) YOU JUST CONFIRMED ALL THE OTHER TRUMPTARDS AS LIARS, WHEN YOU ASKED, “The rest?” …. The rest is listed at the link above.

            3) But you made a total public ass of yourself, all by yourself.

  3. I cannot imagine anything those two have to say that could possibly be worth $50,000. But compared to some others (*cough*Hillary*cough*) it’s relatively cheap.

    1. The speaking circuit racket is something I can’t get my head around either.

      1. Legal way to funnel campaign contributions just like the publishing industry.

  4. That’s because the couple will receive $50,000—and the students are footing the bill.

    This is pretty much standard operating procedure. If it’s the money you’re going to bitch about, then cancel all paid speaking functions at the university. Problemo el solved-o.

    1. Read it again. Slower.

  5. Well, damn. Biden’s kid had to work a whole month to get that much money.

    1. This was the best comment on this thread. Too funny. 🙂

      Yep, a whole month to earn 50K.

      1. (lol) Tell us, how much are Board Members are paid, for their role in managing a major corporation.

        I’ll be kind, and won’t name who said the TOTAL dumbfuck claim that one CANNOT be a board member unless they know how to perform the functions of the company,

        In other words,. ONLY an auto worker is qualified to be on the Board of Directors and GM , which aligns them with ,,, ELIZABETH WARREN … as they giggle here.

        Thus proving, yet again, that Left – Right = Zero,
        BECAUSE they are both authoritarians, fighting against individual liberty, as unwitting tools of the political elites,. And chortling.

        P.S. They TOTALLY clueless on the HUGE income granted to Ivanka, by the direct action of the Chinese Government … NOT a corporation.. (lol),

        .

  6. Why not turn the tables on him by actually attending, then asking him conservative questions to watch him squirm and hide behind his bimbo squeeze? As in, give him a chance to either succeed or fail on his own merits.

    1. Sure, but is it worth $50,000 of student money for what is essentially going to be a public charade? As others here have already pointed out, on what merits does Don Jr. have the right to collect such high public speaking fees from the student body?

      1. Um, the right of the free market? He sets a price, they decide if they value it enough to pay? Just like most any transaction?

        1. It’s not a free market if the people who are technically paying for this don’t get to decide. If you want free market, then charge an entrance fee and keep your cut based on how many people are actually willing to pay to hear you speak. Which at this point would technically make it a campaign event, but which leads to the next issue here: since Don Jr. is basically a campaign mouthpiece for Don Sr. (and probably collects a healthy salary for those “services”), why would anyone actually pay him for what will be a campaign stop?

          1. UF does charge an entry fee. Tuition and associated fees. The students freely attend based on the conditions the university can invite and pay for speakers.

            1. Again, so forced hidden fees unrelated to the actual product that students are paying for (college education) are now part of “free market?” FOH

  7. The only sane comment in the story was the one who wondered what the hell either of those two have to offer. He has nothing, and she’s a very unbright prop

    1. A leftie condemning a woman. Tres unusual.

        1. You mean using the link I provided? Yes. Devastating.

          1. To PROVE you lied about your link, I used … YOUR LINK.
            Whoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooosh

            1. In your fevered imaginations, what does “highlights” mean?

              Misogynist simpleton.

    2. She had a successful law career prior to a successful media career but you see her as a dumb slut. No misogyny there.

      1. Goober says being an attorney makes one qualified to be a news anchor and political analyst!!!!!

        1. And you’re awful at reading comprehension.

    3. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the real-world basis for the movie The Joker.

      1. At least you admit it!

    4. Guilfoyle graduated magna cum laude from the University of California, Davis, and received her Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the University of San Francisco School of Law in 1994.
      She later studied at Trinity College, Dublin in Ireland. While there, she published research in international children’s rights and European Economic Community law.
      Yep, just another dumb broad.

      1. Fired from Fox News. And you’re another psycho on what I said.

        1. Sounds like another positive for her.

      2. That’s why college professors are so bright!!!

  8. gonna bitch about a $50k speaking fee wow can’t wait for the expose on dogcatchers

    1. Wait till robbie discovers publishing advances.

  9. If I were a student there I’d be more outraged on the amount spent on administration and useless colleges like victims studies. Millions vs tens of thousands.

  10. You know who else gave speeches?

    1. HELLEN KELLER.

    2. Rufus T. Firefly ?

  11. “It’s hard to argue against the position taken by student Zachariah Chou in the student newspaper…”

    No it’s not. Part of Mr. Chou’s student activity fee goes through student government to finance the ACCENT speaker’s program. It’s probably right there in the papers Mr. Chou signed when he enrolled. If he doesn’t like it, he’s perfectly free to run for student government on the anti-ACCENT program platform. Otherwise, he should have read the fine print.

    1. The irony is the student paper is probably funded with similar fees and I doubt every student agrees with the views of the editors.

  12. So basically ACCENT are corrupt racists that want to control those funds, and only allow their viewpoints to be represented.

  13. My college spend about that much a year booking comedians and other stuff to appear on campus.

    One year, the guy who did it (a friend of mine) just said screw it, and blew the whole wad on George Carlin.

  14. Don jr.? I guess all the good speakers were booked. Otherwise don’t see what the issue is.

  15. The marketplace of ideas.

    I like that.

    (Man walks into shop)

    Man: I would like to purchase some ideas

    Shopkeeper: We have quite a selection of ideas sir, what exactly are you looking for?

    M: Do you have any fresh ideas?

    S: We did get a shipment of fresh ideas yesterday however sold quite a few. Let me see what we have left. (Goes in back returns with box) Take a look though these and see if there is anything you like.

    M: No no these won’t do. How about something in a bright idea?

    S: I do have a few of those but they are slightly stale.

    M: Oh well then I guess i’ll be going. Say, I have been looking for the closest subway station and can’t find it. Do you have a clue?

    S: I did, but I’m afraid the last customer purchased it just before you arrived.

    1. -)

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.