JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The University of Florida is in talks with its police department, local law enforcement and even the FBI when it comes to handling a tentative event, which may host Alt-Right leader Richard Spencer.
"We're concerned about what might happen at the University of Florida and we're having to grapple with a lot of the same things our community is grappling with: Free speech versus our safe community," said Janine Sikes, the UF spokeswoman.
Last week, Spencer's group, the National Policy Institute, reached out to UF last week to rent space for a speech. He said his precense would be "deeply disturbing," but adds that the University encourages open dialogue.
"We do not condone, we do not like Mr. Spencer's rhetoric," Sikes said.
Even so, an email sent by UF President Ken Fuchs over the weekend, the UF may still have to rent the space, so they are working with the FDLE and FBI on security plans.
"White friends and black friends, I just get the feeling that they're discouraged that in 2017 these things can still happen," said student Marsha Joseph.
If the event happens, more than 4,000 students have begun an counter-protest on Facebook.
"Just like the community, we're concerned about safety," Sikes said.
The event to host Spencer is still tentative, but Sikes said a decision should be reached by the end of the week.