Freedom, Hate, and a Campus Divided

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Protesters face off against Freedom Rally attendees. Photo by Kelsey Hamlin

Mahilet Mesfin stood front-and-center at a barricade, one of many spanning the University of Washington’s Red Square last Saturday. The 18-year-old protester and UW student felt she had to be there.

The UW College Republicans (UWCR) had invited Joey Gibson, conservative speaker and leader of Patriot Prayer, to campus for a Freedom Rally to further the argument surrounding free speech on campus. While some feel speech involving white supremacy or promoting racist views should be banned as hate speech, others, including the UWCR, feel that allowing such expression is essential to the idea of free speech. In part, this is why the UWCR invited ex-Breitbart editor and right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos to campus in January 2017, an event that sparked violence and a shooting. This time around, the UWCR attempted to address the same idea with the lesser known, and less controversial, Patriot Prayer. For the Freedom Rally, organizers said they wanted to invite others, even opposition, to take the mic. Patriot Prayer has ceded the mic and stage to opposition in the past. Due to safety concerns, though, it didn’t quite play out that way on Saturday.

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UW Shooting Suspect Admits What Video Already Told Us

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Elizabeth Hokoana, right, seen in an amateur video captured shortly before the shooting. To the left is a Milo Yiannopoulos fan who says he was punched by protestors. Photo via YouTube

More than a month ago, Seattle Weekly reported on a video in which Marc Hokoana can be heard telling his wife Elizabeth Hokoana “don’t shoot anyone” just prior to a shooting at the University of Washington—a fact that seemed to contradict earlier reports that it was Marc who fired the shot that left a man in critical condition. Now it’s been confirmed by Elizabeth’s attorney, Steve Wells, that she was the shooter — something long claimed by the antifascist community.

Via Seattle Weekly

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“Don’t Shoot Anyone.” Another Video of UW Shooting Suspect Surfaces

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Yet another video has surfaced showing the suspects in the Jan. 20 Red Square shooting shortly before their violent confrontation with an anti-fascist protester outside a lecture given by Milo Yiannopoulos.

The video captures the same interaction as one previously covered by Seattle Weekly, but is in closer proximity to the two suspects, Marc Hokoana and Elizabeth Hokoana, fans of Yiannopoulos. The previous video Seattle Weekly covered had Marc exclaiming, “They have to start it!” This most recent YouTube video has him telling Elizabeth, “Don’t shoot anyone” (heard at 0:18).

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‘They Have to Start It!’: UW Shooting Suspect Seen In Video Shortly Before Confrontation

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Photo by Zenwa Shimabukuro

The suspect’s Samsung has been cleared of data, but police are looking through video from others’ phones for clues to what happened Jan. 20 in Red Square. A video appears to capture the UW shooting suspects, heatedly talking the night of the shooting … “They have to start it! They have to start it,” he yells…

Via Seattle Weekly

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