Protesters heckle Richard Spencer at Univ. of Florida talk

Image Anti Richard Spencer protest at Auburn University

CNN reports that this is Spencer's first visit to a college campus since he participated in the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Va. where a woman was killed when protests turned violent.

UF President W. Kent Fuchs said Wednesday in an interview with The Associated Press that Spencer is "hijacking" public universities - which are compelled by the First Amendment to provide a speaking forum - and forcing taxpayers to pay the resulting security costs.

The college said it would have to spend more than $500,000 (£380,000) on security. "A lot of people aren't going to be around campus because they're anxious".

The federal lawsuit by Cameron Padgett, a Georgia university student organizing a tour of campuses by Spencer, sought damages and an injunction to force Penn State to rent him a conference room or lecture hall.

Security is enormous around campus, and Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency. While the University of Florida initially blocked Spencer from speaking, as a state institution, the University is not able to limit free speech. including hate speech. Conservative legislators will have to choose between a platform of pushing fiscal responsibility and one of pushing free speech above all - and account to their voters based on said choice. He told Salon.com in 2013 that white people "need to start thinking about a new ethno-state that we would want to be a part of".

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But not everyone at the event opposed Spencer's views.

"Say it loud, say it clear; Nazis are not welcome here", members of the audience chanted over Spencer's remarks.

Colt Fears, a 28-year-old wearing a pin he described as "an S.S. thing", came to Gainesville from Houston to support Spencer. After they threatened to sue, school officials said they would try to accommodate Spencer if he renewed his request for a different date.

A Facebook event called "No Nazis at UF", which said it was a peaceful protest against Spencer, had about 3,000 marked as going to the speech. Spencer's speech is set for 2:30 p.m. EST and his group the National Policy Institute has been distributing tickets for the event. "But at the end of the day free speech needs to be protected", he said.

"I don't believe staying home is an option in the face of hate and evil", said Timothy Tia, a student organizer.

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