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Texas A&M to host "Aggies United" event in response to controversial speaker

Texas A&M to host "Aggies United" event in response to controversial speaker

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Texas A&M President Michael K. Young announced Tuesday the university will host a campus-wide "Aggies United" event Dec. 6 in response to a planned appearance by a controversial leader from the white nationalist movement.

Young said there has been "a significant outpouring of concern by members of the Aggie community and beyond" regarding the non-university affiliated event featuring Richard Spencer.

"Students, faculty, staff, former students and members of the community expressed their outrage over the speaker's previously-expressed views and have roundly condemned everything for which he seems to stand," Young said in a statement. 

The event's organizer, a former College Station resident, met with university staff on Monday to discuss logistics regarding the event, which is slated to take place in the Memorial Student Center.

"I strongly agree with those sentiments. I find the views of the organizer - and the speaker he is apparently sponsoring - abhorrent and profoundly antithetical to everything I believe," Young said. "In my judgment, those views simply have no place in civilized dialogue and conversation."

[Read: A&M officials say university has no ties to upcoming event featuring controversial speaker]

Young said despite calls to cancel the event and bar Spencer from campus, the university stands by the First Amendment and will not prevent the event from occurring "barring a breach of contract and/or unresolvable safety concerns."

The "Aggies United" event is scheduled to take place at Kyle Field from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and will be open to students, faculty and staff as well as the public.

Details of the event are not yet determined, but Young said announcements regarding speakers and entertainment are expected in the next few days.

Following the event, Young said those in attendance will walk together to Academic Plaza for the December Silver Taps ceremony. 

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