Conservative influencer Will Witt hosts speaking engagement at UMKC

Will Witt speaking at UMKC’s PragerU event.

Gabe Bartholome

Conservative media personality and podcast host Will Witt from Prager University visited UMKC this month. He gave a presentation that covered a wide range of topics, including vaccines, abortion, cancel culture and sexual gratification, among others. 

Witt was invited to campus by the UMKC chapter of Turning Point USA, a conservative youth organization. The event also included a Q&A segment and a signing session of Witt’s latest book, “How to Win Friends and Influence Enemies: Taking on Liberal Arguments with Logic and Humor.”

There was a significant turnout for Witt’s speaking engagement, and most attendees opted not to wear a mask in spite of city and campus mask mandates. 

Witt began his speech by addressing a viral video of a verbal altercation between two UMKC students. The clip was posted on Twitter one day prior to Witt’s appearance and appears to show an unidentified UMKC student tearing down TPUSA’s promotional posters. Corbin Hubbell, a field representative for the UMKC chapter, confronted the student and briefly exchanged some words. 

“It was this whole debacle,” Witt said. “It just goes to show how the left acts when people with a difference of opinion come to their campus.”

Witt said that the video was emblematic of the difference between the political right and left.

“The left destroys every single thing it touches,” Witt said. “They think we’re evil, we think they’re brainwashed.” 

Witt continued by explaining his perspective on specific aspects of the left’s philosophies and actions.

“The nature of the left is chaos and destruction,” Witt said. “Look at socialism and all the things they preach when it comes to that. That is chaos. Look at these Black Lives Matter protesters going into cities and destroying them. That is chaos.”

Witt also touched on the current state of the political sphere and the growing feud between Democrats and Republicans.

“There used to be a time in America where someone could be a Democrat, someone could be a Republican, and you would have shared values,” Witt said. “We no longer have a shared value system in America where we can come together and say, ‘Hey, we might disagree, but that’s fine we disagree.’” 

Tariq Nussairat, a senior political science major at UMKC, said he decided to attend the speaking engagement because there is a lack of respect for differing political views in today’s bipartisan climate. 

“So, I watch a lot of the PragerU videos, and to be honest I’m a big fan of Will Witt, so that’s why I came here,” Nussairat said. “Having that civility and understanding of other people’s point of view and having that civil discourse, I feel like at the end of the day, that [is something] that we need to have despite political views.”

Also in attendance was a 13-year-old named Esther, who became interested in Witt’s online content after her friend showed her his videos.

“I liked being able to form opinions but also explain my views, and not just coming from one outlet, but also being able to research those things myself,” Esther said.

Turning Point USA does not have any events listed in RooGroups for the foreseeable future.

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