- A scheduled stop on the “Lies Pro-Choicers Believe” Tour at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in Richmond, VA, erupts into violence.
- Heckler’s Veto Attempted.
- School Police Refused to Stop Violent Protestors who were shoving and shouting, to shut down the event, instead asking Hawkins to leave.
- Protestors shouted: “Fascists Go Home;” “Nazis Go Home;” and “F**k Pro-lifers” on a loop to drown out conversation. See some of the protestors here at Instagram.
- Hawkins refused to stop the event, telling campus police, “You would have to arrest me. I’m not leaving.”
- City police broke up the event, oddly detaining pro-life students and leaders as Antifa and Activists allowed to leave.
RICHMOND, VA (03-29-2023) – The “Lies Pro-Choicers Believe” Tour ended with police breaking up the event scheduled for Virginia Commonwealth University after Students for Life of America President Kristan Hawkins and Student Ambassador Isabel Brown were shouted down while trying to speak on campus about the misinformation commonly preached by pro-abortion zealots. “Antifa came for a fight,” said Students for Life of America Executive Vice President Tina Whittington who attended the event.
While this is not the first time that Antifa has protested Hawkins, it was the most violent. SFLA campus team members recognized professional Antifa agitators in the crowd because they have shown up at other events, egging on protestors in the crowd. Protestors carried signs for Black Lives Matter and Transgender power, using them to sometimes assault those in the crowd who were recording the chaos.
As a series of altercations unfolded, a number of pro-life students and SFLA staff were assaulted resulting in several complaints filed and EMTs called to the scene to treat injuries. Autumn Walser, president of Students for Life at VCU, received an injury to her leg while a fellow student suffered cuts and scratches from aggressive protestors clawing at her.
SFLA Documentarian Kevin Feliciano who was recording the event was blocked and struck with signs to prevent his work recording the protestors. He also filed a complaint.
This is what happens when our nation glorifies harmful ideologies, refuses to prosecute evil-doers, and closes down open discussion. Antifa (so basically fascists) tried to silence us with their assaults @VCU. pic.twitter.com/XXsGRlcW6n— Kristan Hawkins (@KristanHawkins) March 29, 2023
“Students for Life will be providing security for Autumn on campus for the near future until we can be sure that she is safe here,” said Hawkins. “And we will be demanding that VCU invite me and Isabel back to hold an event that is safe for all to attend.”
“The protestors had three chants they kept recycling, ‘Fascists Go Home;’ ‘Nazis Go Home;’ and ‘F**k Pro-lifers,’” said Whittington. “It was so ridiculous. That’s the definition of fascism and Naziism — not allowing for free speech. They wouldn’t allow other ideas to be expressed, and in a way, they won, even though pro-life students stayed to talk after the event.”
Hawkins was traveling with security that had to intervene to protect both her and other pro-life people in the crowd and who tried to call for a single representative from the protestors to ask questions and have a dialog. But most in the crowd did not want conversation.
Whittington noted that as security tried to assist one pro-life woman in the crowd, people fell against each other because of the press of bodies, leading one pro-abortion woman to attempt to argue she may have been assaulted.
Sadly, campus police refused to address the student shouting and shoving, and instead asked Hawkins to leave. Hawkins refused to stop the event, telling campus police, “You would have to arrest me. I’m not leaving.”
“The free speech rights of pro-life Americans and especially pro-life students are at stake,” said Hawkins after the event. “We can’t stop meeting for fear of opposition.”
City police were called and oddly detained SFLA team members and the pro-life students, allowing the Antifa and Transgender activists to disperse peacefully. Meanwhile, peaceful pro-life individuals were behind closed doors, and SFLA property and signs were stolen and vandalized.
We came to @VCU, a public university to speak about abortion and we were assaulted. VCU you should be ashamed of yourselves for allowing this and shutting down any freedom of thought or speech at your university. pic.twitter.com/UCp4LpHNmS— Kristan Hawkins (@KristanHawkins) March 29, 2023
“Silencing the peaceful people because of fear of the loud and violent makes us all less safe,” said Hawkins. “We will be back to ensure that free speech truly exists at VCU.”
Statements were taken, but information on formal complaints is not available this evening.
For interviews, contact Kristi Hamrick at [email protected]
Students for Life Action (SFLAction), a 501c4, along with its 501c3 sister organization, Students for Life of America (SFLA), make up the nation’s largest pro-life youth organization and a political and policy operation engaging people of all ages. Together they work to end abortion — the human rights issue of our day — and provide political, legal, and community support for women and their children, born and preborn. Headquartered in Fredericksburg, VA, SFLA has more than 1,300 groups on middle, high school, college, university, medical, and law school campuses in all 50 states. SFLA creates strategy, policy, and programming to connect those most targeted for abortion with people ready to help and builds a framework for political engagement on their behalf. SFLA and SFLAction have more conversations with those most targeted by the abortion industry than any other pro-life outreach in the world, reaching more than 2 million people across social media platforms each week and engaging in approximately 100,000 digital conversations per month. Over more than 16 years, President Kristan Hawkins has grown SFLAction/SFLA into an $18 million organization preparing for a Post-Roe America.