Controversial speaker Dinesh D'Souza on UF campus tonight
Gainesville, Fla. —
A speech from conservative speaker Dinesh D'Souza is drawing both support and criticism on the University of Florida campus.
Daniel Weldon, president of Young Americans for Freedom helped organize the speech and said its all about fostering an open conversation between Dinesh and students.
" We are hoping to engage in a civil conversation. We have thirty minutes of question and answer where people who disagree with us can come and challenge Dinesh on his views," Weldon said.
However others like Sophia Ahmed say its a conversation that shouldn't be allowed to happen because of controversial messages Dinesh tweeted out after the Parkland school shootings.
" There are students at UF who went to MSD and I don't know if they would be content knowing that someone who made fun of the survivors of the shooting is coming here using their student fees and money," Ahmed said.
Ahmed organized a protest to take place during the speech -- she said though Dinesh has a right to free speech, students also have a right to protest.
"There are a lot of arguments on campus saying you can't restrict my free speech, but they also try to limit us trying to protest."
Weldon says he's aware of the protesters, but they won't be able to stop the speech.
" We are working with the university police department to make sure that if they try to come into our event and disrupt it we will be guaranteed our first amendment rights to allow Dinesh to speak."
Despite the criticism, Weldon says the speech is about giving students a chance to hear new ideas and a different perspective.
" Having this dialogue is what university is all about. You should be challenged to learn new ideas and hear from the other side."