Robert Van Tuinen captured his furious, but civil, confrontation with the officer and campus administration on video and posted it on YouTube today.
National attention garnered by the video prompted the Yosemite Community College District to issue a statement saying it was looking into the matter.
District policy allows students to distribute materials in the free speech areas "as long as they don't disrupt the orderly operation of the college," Public Affairs Director Nick Stavrianoudakis said by e-mail.
"In the case of the YouTube video, it did not appear that the student was disrupting the orderly operation of the college," the statement says.
In the video, Van Tuinen argues his right to free speech is being violated. The officer says Van Tuinen is too upset, shaking and being argumentative.
Van Tuinen next argues with an administrator in the Student Development and Campus Life office, where he is told that he may not pass out any papers, even in the free speech area, without prior authorization and is told he will need to make an appointment to get that permission with the campus vice president of student services.
"The administration of the YCCD supports the peaceful distribution of the Constitution and other materials on campus, which is why our colleges support Constitution Day with activities each year," Stavrianoudakis said.
Bee education reporter Nan Austin.
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