Allen West to FAU protesters: Stop harassing my wife or face ‘the side of me that you do not want to see’by George Bennett | April 17th, 2013
Former U.S. Rep. Allen West accused Florida Atlantic University protesters of harassing his wife, an FAU Board of Trustees member, and warned them in a Facebook post today to stop or “you will face me, the side of me that you do not want to see.”
The Stop Owlcatraz Coalition, a group formed to protest a $6 million stadium-naming deal at FAU, fired back with a statement accusing West of threatening students and calling on FAU to bar the former Republican congressman from all its campuses.
Angela West, a financial adviser with Raymond James, said two FAU students came uninvited to her Fort Lauderdale office last month to urge her to oppose a private prison contractor’s $6 million donation to the school. GEO Group, which made the $6 million pledge and was to have its name on FAU’s football stadium, ended up withdrawing the gift this month after weeks of uproar.
Angela West said that when she disagreed with the students who came to her office they demanded she resign from the board. When she asked them to leave, West said, one of the students said “Oh, you think you’re as tough as your husband.” West, who is black, said a student also accused her of wanting to “bring back Jim Crow” — a reference to laws that perpetuated segregation.
One of West’s co-workers at Raymond James, Leon Rehak, backed up her account and said that when the students left, they slammed a door so hard it nearly broke a window.
The Stop Owlcatraz Coalition offered a different account of the meeting in its statement.
“She agreed to a March 18 meeting at her Raymond James office in Fort Lauderdale. At that meeting, Angela became rude and aggressive and students walked out of the meeting as she began yelling at them,” the group’s statement said.
Outside Tuesday’s Board of Trustees meeting, Angela West said one of the students who had been to her office waved to her in the lobby and she pointed him out to an FAU police officer as “the fellow that barged into my office.”
The student group offered this account of Tuesday’s events: “Students attended yesterday’s Board of Trustees meeting to hear the President and all the Trustees, not just West. There, she harassed FAU students and instructed two FAU police officers to question them about the meeting (they refused to do so). Allen and Angela West are harassing and threatening FAU students, not the other way around.”
Here’s the text of Allen West’s Facebook post on the subject:
I completely understand the Alinsky tactics and have no issue with the insidious and incessant personal attacks by the left against me. However, I am warning you, end your harassment of my wife Angela. The students from Florida Atlantic University who have gone to my wife’s office, stalked her at the FAU Board of Trustee meetings, and sent letters to her company headquarters, end it now. This is not a threat, it is a promise that if Angela calls and tells me of one more incident, you will face me, the side of me that you do not want to see. My wife Angela is an American citizen and if you believe that you can intimidate her to surrender her freedoms you are mistaken. Those left wing groups and lawyers associated with these individuals supporting their antics, I recommend you disassociate yourself. How dare you animals attack my wife and her professional reputation. This is your one and only advisory notice.
Here’s the text of the Stop Owlcatraz Coalition statement:
Earlier today, Allen West posted a statement on his Facebook page threatening FAU students (see full statement below).
The FAU administration should issue Allen West a restraining order barring him from all FAU campuses, and should release a statement affirming their commitment to students’ and the greater FAU community’s rights to public safety and free speech.
Allen West alleges students are “harassing” his wife, Angela West. Members of the Stop Owlcatraz Coalition, in February and March, met privately with most of the members of the FAU Board of Trustees, including Angela West. As public officials and the trustees of our university, they have a duty to be accessible and accountable to the constituencies they serve.
She agreed to a March 18 meeting at her Raymond James office in Fort Lauderdale. At that meeting, Angela became rude and aggressive and students walked out of the meeting as she began yelling at them.
Students attended yesterday’s Board of Trustees meeting to hear the President and all the Trustees, not just West. There, she harassed FAU students and instructed two FAU police officers to question them about the meeting (they refused to do so). Allen and Angela West are harassing and threatening FAU students, not the other way around.