Tuesday, February 19

UCLA will not take action against Alexandra Wallace


UCLA is not pursuing action against Alexandra Wallace for her YouTube video “Asians in the Library,” university officials announced today.

In a statement, Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Janina Montero explained that Wallace’s video rant did not violate the Student Code of Conduct, and the university does not punish free speech.

“We have no intention of pursuing a discipline matter “”mdash; which in no way diminishes the pain felt by so many in the campus community and around the world,” Montero said in the statement.

Wallace could not immediately be reached for comment.

The video showed Wallace, a third-year political science student, making derogatory comments about Asian students. The video, originally posted March 11, was taken down but was reposted by others. It went viral Sunday and has since gained international attention.

Wallace apologized for her video in a statement to the Daily Bruin Monday. The Bruin later reported that she has received threatening e-mails and phone calls. University police are still investigating the nature of communications made to Wallace, said university spokesman Phil Hampton.

Chancellor Gene Block denounced the video in an e-mail to the campus and a video posted online Monday.

“The bar on free expression is very high. However offended one might be with the comments that were in the video the fact remains that campus policies do not punish free speech. They punish hate speech,” Hampton said.

In an interview with The Bruin Thursday, First Amendment scholar and UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh said Wallace’s comments in the video were constitutionally protected.

The Office of the Dean of Students has been in communication with Wallace over the past week. However, the campus’s focus, Hampton said, has been to ensure that there is an environment in which Wallace could complete her studies during finals week.

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