A tabling event hosted by two dissident right-wing streamers featuring the banner “#YeisRight, Change My Mind” occurred at Florida Atlantic University Wednesday afternoon, leading to condemnation from the university and state and federal lawmakers.
Tyler Russell and Dalton Clodfelter, streamers on the alternative platform Cozy.tv, hosted the event to discuss with students Ye's recent controversies, ranging from the artist wearing a “White Lives Matter” shirt to saying he loves everyone, including Hitler.
Russell told College Dissident that he and Clodfelter “had meaningful, productive conversations throughout the day, mostly from students who were Christian.” Russell recounted one example of three “Christian sorority girls” who were “unsure about Ye being president” but saw it as a possibility, liking how he promoted free speech. “It seemed as if there was a pattern where the Christians were open to YE24.”
As the event went underway, however, student protesters, many of whom were Jewish, quickly arrived, footage from the Twitter account @YEisRIGHT2024 shows.
The Twitter account @StopAntisemites, a self-described “non-partisan American based organization fighting antisemitism” which named Ye “2022 Antisemite of the Year,” published a photo of various students protesting the event, writing that “Hillel members quickly organized to protest Russell and his 3 accomplices.”
Later that day, Florida Atlantic University's Office of the President released a statement condemning the event:
If you visited the Breezeway today, you may have seen a table with a banner referencing Anti-Semitic messages. The University strongly and unequivocally condemns hate and Anti-Semitism. Florida Atlantic University believes in the freedoms provided by the First Amendment; however, we also denounce Anti-Semitism in all its forms. Although no security threat was identified, FAU Police were in the area to provide security as needed.
Democrat Florida State Senator Tina Polsky responded to the event on Twitter by labeling Russell and Clodfelter “anti-semites and white nationalists” and saying they are “not welcome here,” tagging the Anti-Defamation League. The replies to her tweet overwhelmingly disagreed with her.
Daniel Schmidt, the chairman of the grassroots organization Students For Ye, responded to State Senator Tina Polsky on Twitter, advising her she “might want to delete” her tweet because she is “calling for the violation of the First Amendment.”
Democrat Representative Jared Moskowitz, who served as Florida Governor Ron DeSantis' Director of the Division of Emergency Management, commended the student protesters for their “bravery and quick action.”
The Consul General of Israel in Miami, Maor Elbaz-Starinsky, also released a statement on Twitter, writing that Russell and Clodfelter “should not have been allocated a space to begin with.”
A reply to his tweet questioned why Elbaz-Starinsky, a foreign agent, has the right to decide which speech is acceptable.
Students also condemned the event. The organization Students Supporting Israel at Florida Atlantic University released a statement on Instagram, labeling support for Ye as unprotected speech and announcing that members of the organization “will be walking around campus to collect signatures for the Jewish Youth Pledge.”
Watch Russell and Clodfelter's one-hour video of the event: