Dan Rodricks: Vanished faces of a West Virginia boom town

Texas A&M University

US colleges confront a new era of sometimes-violent protest

Fearing a return to violent protests that roiled campuses in the 1970s, colleges and universities are re-examining how to protect free speech while keeping students and employees safe in a time of political polarization.

Campus police are trying new tactics to try to keep events peaceful, while other schools have abruptly canceled controversial speakers over safety concerns, as the University of California, Berkeley, did with conservative writer Ann Coulter's appearance, originally scheduled for Thursday.

In response to earlier rioting at Berkeley, the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators last month put on daylong protest preparation and...