On Thursday UNM announced that as a result of the large security presence that will be on hand for Milo Yiannapoulos' visit, and presumably heightened tension due to scheduled protests, some facilities and services will be shutting down earlier than normal on Friday.
University officials continued to assure students and other concerned community members that, despite the event being held in a UNM venue, it isn't an official UNM event. The early closures are to ensure the safety of everyone in the area, making clear that University administration is fully aware of Yiannopoulos' controversial nature, and the heated protests that tend to erupt at his visits to college campuses.
The following are changes that students should take not of for Friday afternoon, according to UNM.
- The top deck of the Yale Parking Structure will be blocked off from noon to 10 p.m.
- UNM Bookstore and all campus libraries will close at 4 p.m.
- All food operations in the SUB will close at 3 p.m.
- SUB lower level services and offices will close at 4 p.m., except for the SUB Theater and third floor, where events are scheduled.
- Access to the SUB Theater for those attending the Telluride Mountain Film Festival will only be through the south first floor doors.
- Access to third floor meetings and events will also be only through the south (main or second level) entrance via elevator and stairs.
- Access to the Yiannopoulos event will only be through the SUB’s east doors. All other doors will be closed.
- Access to the dining area will be closed.
- Queueing for the event will begin on the upper patio at about 4:45 p.m.
- No one will be allowed to attend the event without a ticket.
- No food, water or backpacks will be allowed; attendees will be scanned.
Multiple Yiannopoulos engagements in Colorado universities this week were met with opposition. His "Dangerous Faggot Tour" made national waves last week when a protester was shot outside his event at the University of Washington. Earlier this week, he was transferred out of intensive care, according to The Seattle Times.
A coalition of student groups that have been working together to potentially cancel the event has stated that they will be on hand to protest outside the SUB, where a large contingent of security personnel is expected to be to keep things from getting out of hand.
The Red Nation has suggested the most forceful tactics for disrupting the event when they have stated in the past that they will essentially shut down the event by using any means necessary, including "taking the stage, and taking the mic."
Their Facebook page has been updated to reflect a more peaceful approach.
"We want to make it clear that we do not intend to engage in any kind of harassment, destruction of property or anything otherwise illegal," the group wrote on their page. "We are merely practicing our First Amendment rights.We welcome all to join us in the denouncing of White supremacy and bigotry on the UNM campus."
David Lynch is the editor-in-chief at the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @RealDavidLynch.