Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke at Georgetown Law School on Tuesday to address the importance of free speech in America. Sessions, who was met with considerable opposition, used the opportunity to criticize the American university system, which he says challenges the principles of free speech.
“The American university was once the center of academic freedom, a place of robust debate, a forum for the competition of ideas,” Sessions told the crowd. “But it is transforming into an echo chamber of political correctness and homogenous thought, a shelter for fragile egos.”
In line with Sessions criticisms, dozens of Georgetown University students and faculty gathered Tuesday on the steps of McDonough Hall to protest the address. His presence at the Georgetown Law Campus was met with heated opposition as students and staff attempted to disrupt Sessions’ speech by waving signs, chanting slogans, and kneeling in front of the entrance.
Before Sessions spoke more than 30 Georgetown Law faculty members signed a letter in which they acknowledge Sessions’ right to be there but “condemn the hypocrisy of Attorney General Sessions speaking about free speech.”
Sessions is not the first conservative to be met by an unsupportive audience and protests both at Georgetown or at other campuses.
In February, an unexpectedly violent protests forced the shutdown of a speech by provocative writer Milo Yiannopoulos at the University of California at Berkeley. In April, Georgetown held a panel including Trump’s then deputy assistant Sebastian Gorka, which met with protests from students on campus, causing Gorka to leave the panel midway through.