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FAU denies conservative student group

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Florida Atlantic University (FAU) campus officials shut down and called campus police on four students and an alumnus of FAU to stop an informational meeting about starting a conservative organization on campus.

James Shackelford, an FAU student, saw a need for a conservative club at the Florida Atlantic University campus and decided to start a Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) chapter. Shackelford hosted an informational meeting with FAU alum and Florida YAF State Director Daniel P. Diaz to discuss future activities of YAF on campus as well as around the state. While Diaz was speaking at the informational meeting David Blank, a university administrator, asked the group to leave the room. Diaz asked Blank for fifteen minutes to finish speaking and Blank politely agreed to allow the group to finish its meeting. Upon hearing Diaz addressing the liberal bias on the FAU campus, Blank stopped the meeting again and boorishly ordered the students to vacate the meeting room; shut off the room lights, tore down the group’s promotional posters, and called the campus police.

Ben Buck, an FAU student at the meeting, said “We were sitting in a peaceful meeting, just discussing a new organization, when we were approached by an administrator asking us to leave based on the content of our discussion regardless of previous verbal permission to talk on public property.”

While the FAU students and Diaz were leaving campus FAU police detained and interrogated the group. Shackelford and Diaz were ordered to drop their meeting materials and to present identification. Diaz asked if they had broken any laws and the officer said “we are investigating a possible trespassing charge and that is why we need to see your identification.” Full story here.


Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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