Pro-Life Students Charged with Trespassing on their own campus

Normally, when one thinks of trespassing, you think of someone illegally being somewhere they have no right to be, or where they just don’t belong. You don’t think of college students being in a public area on their own campus.

It turns out the you can get charged with trespassing at the University of Calgary if you set up a pro-life display – even if you’re a student. Six such students have been charged with trespassing after the University initially approved their display, then seemingly changed course after administrators didn’t like the graphic nature of the display. In other words, the difference between trespassing and not trespassing is the nature of your views.

From Lifenews [1]:

Pro-life advocates at the school have feuded with UC officials for some time about a display that includes graphic pictures.

UC authorities don’t want students, faculty and others exposed to the abortion pictures, so it has instructed members of Campus Pro-Life to turn the pictures inward, which makes them not visible to people walking along the college grounds. …

“We have a right to freedom of speech in Canada, and the university has acknowledged that we have the right under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom in the past,” she said, according to the CBC.

“I am not too sure why they changed their minds. I think it’s because of the nature of the signs, because the signs show abortion for what abortion is,” she added about what happened. …

Again, it just seems to come down to the opinions being expressed…and the fact that the university administration doesn’t approve of them…or want the public exposed to them.

The University of Calgary released a statement saying it “has attempted for several years to find a reasonable compromise with Campus Pro-Life that would give members of the university community the choice to view or not view” the pro-life display.

But Hallman tells Canadian Press that the university is changing its position.

“The university had previously displayed signs saying that our right to be there and to put up the display was protected under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. And then we watched them cover that sign up,” she said. …

And just in case you don’t have a good idea of the university’s point of view…

Also last month, the University of Calgary Students’ Union revoked the pro-life club’s official status.

Tolerance. Nice to see it doesn’t work both ways.

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