A conservative group at an Ivy League college was reportedly forced to take a planned event virtual after reported threats tied to a left-wing protest group, according to journalist Andy Ngo.
The Dartmouth College chapter of Turning Point USA (TPUSA) was hosting Ngo and Gabriel Nadales, a former member of the left-wing group, to discuss Antifa at a Thursday night event before the college canceled it due to concerns about security, the Post Millennial reported.
“In light of concerning information from Hanover police regarding safety issues shared late in the afternoon, similar concerns expressed by the College Republican leadership, and challenges with the student organization’s ability to staff a large public event and communicate effectively (including dissemination of the visitor policy and a prohibition on bags in the building), the College requested that the Extremism in America panel be moved online,” Diana Lawrence, a spokeswoman for Dartmouth, told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
An email from DCNF with follow-up questions, including one asking what steps would be taken to ensure the conservative student group would be able to engage in protected expression, was not returned.
“I remain hopeful that they will be able to protect them, but last night they sent a message that they are willing to be swayed by extremists,” Samuel Lee of TPUSA told the DCNF. Lee added that the student group learned of the shift at the last minute via local police.
The presentation by Ngo and Nadales was hosted on Dartmouth’s Zoom page.
“Prior to the event, Antifa groups and accounts threatened armed violence,” Ngo posted on Twitter. He also posted screenshots of posts from what he described as “Antifa accounts” detailing the calls for action.
“Anti-fascists from Mass, NH, VT, Maine; anti-fascists from all over New England will be mobilizing January 20th, 2022 at Dartmouth College to disrupt & prevent fascist propagandists like Andy Ngo from normalizing their reactionary beliefs on college campuses in the Northeast,” a post in a Twitter thread from Northeast FASHWATCH said. The group’s post included a photo taken of Ngo after a 2019 attack that resulted in an overnight hospital stay.
The group celebrated the cancellation of the in-person event in another post on Twitter.
Prior to the posts from that account, there were other efforts to disrupt the event, which was advertised on Eventbrite. Nearly 24,000 registrations, many of them “spam,” were made for the event, a field representative for TPUSA told DCNF.
A number of emails from media outlets were among those used for fake registrations. A Trump re-election campaign rally in Tulsa was also flooded with similar fake registrations, which was celebrated by Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, according to a June 2020 Daily Wire report.
“This is the first time the New England territory has seen something of this magnitude,” Lee told the DCNF. He told the DCNF that the group took steps to address the fake registrations when the spamming started and contacted Eventbrite but had received no response and eventually changed how they handled reservations for the event.
“Eventbrite works hard to protect its community of ticket buyers and event organizers, and is taking immediate steps to investigate and address the situation,” a spokeswoman for the online event company said.
Antifa has a history of being accused of using violence against conservatives or those opposing left-wing causes. In 2021, alleged incidents included another attack on Ngo, an assault against protestors outside a Los Angeles spa, an attack on a prayer meeting in Portland, Oregon, and forming a mob outside the D.C.-area home of Republican Sen. Josh Hawley on Jan. 4 of that year.
Hanover PD did not respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.
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