Tim Vitale, spokesman for Utah State University, on Anita Sarkeesian’s cancellation of a planned lecture in the wake of emailed threats:
She was worried about Utah law preventing police from keeping people with legal, conceal-carry permits from entering the event. But our police were prepared and had in place extra security measures. It was her decision to cancel.
Vitale’s tone suggests Sarkeesian overreacted, that the University could somehow guarantee her safety. That, of course, is an absurd implication, particularly because the email, which Bob Mims of the Salt Lake Tribune described as “threatening bloody mayhem,” apparently came from a USU student.
Sarkeesian’s cancellation was the most responsible course of action, and the school should be ashamed of its failure to cancel, not bragging about it.
Utah citizens with permits have the right to carry concealed guns. And Anita Sarkeesian has the right to avoid the danger created by the juxtaposition of that freedom with threats on her life and the lives of her audience members.