A self-identified Black conservative student at the University of Iowa grew emotional Wednesday while testifying before Congress about the harassment she’d experienced on campus, arguing college administrators are “coddling” and even “empowering” threats made by leftist demonstrators.
Jasmyn Jordan, chairwoman of the conservative group Iowa Young Americans for Freedom (YAF), told members of the House Judiciary Committee that she’s “discovered that the playing field for freedom of speech on college campuses was not equalized” between those on both sides of the political spectrum.
“The first time I noticed this was when Iowa YAF hosted Kellyanne Conway as a speaker. In response, I was doxxed in a group chat of over 800 students and was falsely labeled as a Nazi, a token, a white supremacist and a bigot,” Jordan said, growing visibly emotional. “Some individuals even expressed that I made them uncomfortable and feared that I might commit a hate crime against them simply because I’m Black and hold conservative principles. These students believe that if you are conservative, you are hateful, support oppression and only want to benefit straight White men even though such beliefs are untrue.”
The hearing, billed as to discuss “freedom of speech on college campuses,” also centered around the rise of antisemitic incidents at major American universities amid the Israel-Hamas war. After anti-Israel demonstrators disrupted the hearing crying for a cease-fire in Gaza and accusing the Jewish state of a “genocide” and “apartheid” of Palestinians, Rep. Darell Issa, R-Calif, warned that the demonstrators were unwittingly “playing into the hands of Iran” and called for investigations into who might be funding this unrest at American institutions.
Jordan, who said she was homeschooled until the fifth grade and raised to appreciate American principles, also detailed how her YAF chapter organized to have Lt. Colonel Alan West and columnist Matt Walsh, whose documentary “What Is A Woman?” propelled him to conservative stardom for exposing certain transgender issues, speak at the University of Iowa.
With West, she said online promotion of the event was altered “against school policy” with messages claiming “racism is prevalent in schools” and “critical race theory should be supported.”
When West did speak on campus on the topic of debunking diversity, equity inclusion and proving that America is not racist, Jordan recalled how a protester stood in the back of the event space holding a sign that read, “Stop the alt right, Punch your local Nazi today.”
“This is blatant irony. Conservatives are slandered by students and faculty as harmful. Here’s an obvious example of someone openly delivering a violent threat and facing no repercussions as the entitlement continues,” she said. “I find that when a conservative doesn’t want to hear a speaker, they just don’t attend the event. But when a leftist doesn’t want to hear a speaker, they do everything they can to shut the lecture down.”
As for when YAF brought Walsh to campus, Jordan said, “Students and faculty were willing to do anything to cancel the event just because they found Walsh’s speech to be offensive.”
“Some people were so dedicated to silencing our voices that literally, as one of us was advertising with chalk. A leftist student was erasing each of those letters with the wipe. We received death threats, along with plenty of verbal harassment that night before. Speaking of that, my hall mate, who happened to be the one who erased by chalk, stalked outside of my bedroom door by putting his ear on it to see if I was in my room because he was just outraged by my involvement,” Jordan testified. “That was a terrifying experience. But what I find to be more appalling is when I talked to our hall coordinator about this and she replied, ‘People are allowed to think, feel and react however they want to about this upcoming event.’”
WATCH: ANTI-ISRAEL PROTESTERS DISRUPT HEARING:
At the event itself, Jordan recalled how someone spilled 20,000 marbles on the floor to prevent people from entering, attendees were spat on, and a popular band played music to drown Walsh out.
“Despite repeatedly meeting with the university administration, the rules are continually permitted to be broken by left leaning students,” Jordan said. “They are in fact coddled by our school. The university expresses affirmations and puts together support, solidarity and celebration spaces.
“These individuals act out against conservatives without care or consequence and are empowered to act this way because of the lack of action by the administration and university leaders,” Jordan said. The current student University of Iowa student went on to testify that, “conservatives often have to hide who they are and what they believe in so that they do not lose relationships or receive a lower grade or face constant doxing, harassment, intimidation or threats.
“I went to college with the expectation that I would hear different points of view because I thought would be a place where young people could come together, disagree and still be friendly and courteous to one another,” she said. “However, after two years, I realized that this is not the case at all and that students who hold opposing views are often subjected to frequent violent threats and other forms of harassment with no accountability.”