Less than three hours after Red Alert published an article on a UCLA student president who was made to apologize for his “white privilege,” UCLA’s student government Publicity Chair reached out to Red Alert, asking us to take it down.
“As you can imagine, due to the sensitivity of the topic of your news coverage we would like to respectfully ask you and the team at Red Alert Politics to please remove this article from your website,” the Undergraduate Students Association Council spokesperson wrote in an email to Red Alert, linking the article. “Siegel does not feel safe on campus and the nature of this article could instigate gang violence against him.”
Newsflash: we won’t censor facts just because they make you uncomfortable. That goes against our entire philosophy.
This article poses no threat to an elected and well-known student official, where the campus is widely aware of the story. The attempt to censor our article has little to do with safety and everything to do with… well, publicity. Hence why a publicity official emailed us, not campus security.
Our article covers Danny Siegel, the student president who has been protested and asked to resign since a photo of him surfaced from four years ago, in which he posed with a gang hand symbol. Black separatist groups on campus accused him of “appropriating” black culture by demonstrating a hand symbol that belongs to gangsters in black neighborhoods.
“It’s funny how a white man can put up a gang sign and we have this,” student Robert Gardner protested at a student government meeting. “A black person puts up a gang sign, like my cousin, and they six feet under.”
Siegel, a liberal Democrat, blames his own “white privilege” for his inexperience of gang culture, which led him to pose for the photo without being fully aware of the consequences. Now, Siegel is fearing his life because the violent gangsters reading this article presumably might think he has some kind of relationship with us (which he doesn’t) and go after him for daring to appropriate their symbol.
To reiterate, we will not censor our content, and we encourage further coverage by other publications as well.
We doubt any Red Alert readers are violent gangsters who shoot people who offend them. In the case that there are any violent gangsters reading this or any of our other articles: Please read more, so that perhaps we can influence you to appreciate violence-free discourse as much as we do.
We also encourage UCLA’s police department to provide proper security for Siegel and other students affected.