Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

Kirk and Prager announce their return to ASU despite months of ongoing controversy

Charlie Kirk and Dennis Prager will be returning to ASU in September following an investigation of alleged free speech violations at the University

Politics-kirk-prager-pt2 -moss-8302023.jpg

Conservative media personality and co-founder of PragerU, Dennis Prager, speaks at the Health, Wealth and Happiness event with Dr. Radha Gopalan, Robert Kiyosaki and moderator Ann Atkinson at the Gammage Theater on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2023, in Tempe.

Charlie Kirk and Dennis Prager, two conservative public figures, will be returning to speak at ASU after an event they held last February was protested by Barrett Honors faculty. 

The protest from Barrett faculty to separate themselves from the event and the closure of the T.W. Lewis Center in June led to a joint state legislative committee investigation in July. 

READ MORE: Starting this week, the T.W. Lewis Center at Barrett is no more

"I'm sure the 39 'honors college' professors who demanded that we wouldn't be allowed on campus in February will be delighted we are coming back!" Kirk said in a Tweet promoting the event on Sept. 27. 

The event will have an appearance from Arizona State Rep. Austin Smith from Legislative District 29. Smith was on the Ad Hoc Committee which gave the University 60 days to investigate accusations of free speech violations. 

"We not only allow but encourage an environment where all members of the university community are able to fully participate in an open exchange of ideas," a University spokesperson wrote in an emailed statement. 

READ MORE: Joint State Legislature Committee gives University 60 days to investigate Prager event and T.W. Lewis Center

The "Health, Wealth & Happiness 2.0" seminar hasn’t confirmed a location and will not be hosted by any Barrett affiliates. The event is being sponsored by Turning Point USA at Arizona State University.

"This time around, Prager and Kirk will not be speaking in my name or the name of the college to which I belong," said Michael Ostling, a Barrett Honors Faculty Professor, in an email. "This lessens my responsibility to speak up against them, but not my responsibility to stand in solidarity with the people that this group of trolls so delights in bullying and vilifying."

Since the first "Health, Wealth & Happiness" seminar, many of the Barrett faculty who signed the petition to distance themselves from the event have been put on Kirk’s "Professor Watchlist." 

"In the months since the uproar surrounding the initial 'Health, Wealth, and Happiness' event, it has been made abundantly clear that Dennis Prager and Charlie Kirk are attempting to use ASU as a stage upon which to promote their broader anti-inclusive and anti-intellectual agenda," said Alex Young, a Barrett Honors Faculty Professor in an email. 

Edited by Jasmine Kabiri, Alexis Waiss, and Grace Copperthite.

Reach the reporter at and follow @alysa_horton on X.

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on X.

Continue supporting student journalism and donate to The State Press today.

Subscribe to Pressing Matters



This website uses cookies to make your experience better and easier. By using this website you consent to our use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie Policy.