On Friday, just one day before the #WalkAway Chicago event was set to take place, Theater Wit canceled out of the blue. The venue called the movement “proto-fascist” and described the various panelists as “bigoted.”

#WalkAway was founded by Brandon Straka on May 26th, 2018. Before #WalkAway, he was a hairstylist, aspiring actor, and self-described liberal. Straka is also a gay man. Now, he’s leading a mass exit of the Democratic party. Straka has held multiple town hall events specifically for the LGBT community in major cities like New York and Los Angeles.

What Happened

#WalkAway’s LGBT town hall in Chicago this past weekend was not met without resistance. Straka tweeted this video in response to their initial venue canceling their event.

https://twitter.com/usminority/status/1144777014135709702

Straka explained that, 24 hours before the event, Theater Wit in Chicago called and canceled. They justified their action by claiming that #WalkAway was a “hate group,” and that their panelists were bigoted. This left Straka and his team, which included transgender political commentator Blaire White, stranded in Chicago without a venue.

Following the cancellation, Straka and his group went to speak with Theater Wit.

He accused employees of the theater of insulting his team and assaulting him.

In the hours leading up to the event, Straka composed a number of tweets explaining the situation and pleading with social media users to help them find another venue. Luckily, about 3 hours later, they were able to secure another venue. They were reached out to by City Hall Chicago and offered a place to hold their event.

They were able to hold a successful event in Chicago, but not without struggle.

In Their Own Words

Straka was reached for comment and offered the following:

The way my team and I were treated this past weekend and the turmoil that we were forced to experience due to the discrimination projected on us by people intolerant of diversity of thought and opinion are directly indicative of why I created #WalkAway to begin with, and why millions of people across the country are fleeing the political left.

It is now considered an act of hate to tell black people, brown people, LGBT people, women, and religious minorities that they have freedom of choice. All Americans are allowed to think for themselves, to vote their conscience, and to break free from the rigid, inflexible groupthink and tribal mentality of the left.

#WalkAway has been labeled a hate group by many progressives and banned and cancelled because we dare to bring this message to minority communities whether liberals and progressives like it or not.

Our cancellation in NYC and our cancellation in Chicago only strengthen our resolve to charge forward. I will not stop and #WalkAway will not stop until every American gets this message: You are allowed to think for yourself. You are allowed to change. You are not obligated to be a democrat based off of your race, your gender, your creed or sexual orientation. You can #WalkAway.

Hostility to Free Speech

The climate for free speech has become more and more hostile. This is especially true for those who speak out against the Democratic party. It’s becoming customary today for people to be labeled “fascist,” “hateful,” “bigoted,” “racist,” and more—simply for disagreeing politically. Movements like #WalkAway are leading the fight against this culture of political correctness and social justice warriors.

Perhaps this movement is hated more than others because it encourages minority groups of all stripes to start thinking for themselves. This is precisely how the Democratic party keeps many people in the fold. They convince people that they will never be equal, and that they will always be victims who must remain dependent to survive.

Straka, who is part of the LGBT community, preaches against the victim mentality. However, the more members of minority groups push back, the more likely they will keep facing resistance. This is exactly why people should band together to support groups like #WalkAway that challenge the Left.