Students at Brown University tore up and threw away Veterans Day flags that were placed on campus last week to honor those who have served our nation. Video of the incident was posted to Facebook by a student at the Providence, Rhode Island, campus before an annual Veterans Day ceremony. Nicholas Strada wrote: “Today was a sad day. … Hundreds of flags were set up on the main green of Brown University by 2 VETERANS in honor of Veterans Day tomorrow, and when i got out of class, people had snapped them, ripped them, and threw them aside.” He said that he spent an hour and a half taping the flags back together and placing them along the walkway. Strada lamented that out of hundreds who walked by during that time, only two people stopped to help him. The university said in an email to the Washington Post that it’s investigating the vandalism.
“We do not condone the activities that led to the flags being removed, and destruction of property is subject to disciplinary review,” the statement said. The Brown Daily Herald reports that the vandalism prompted a sit-in by students who disagree with their classmates’ views. But a student who agreed with the flag removal reportedly wrote on Facebook, “How can you support something as stupid as the American flag?” Meantime, Ivy League and other students are calling for school administrators to make their campuses “sanctuary” areas for undocumented immigrants following the election of Donald Trump. At Harvard, a petition from “concerned” students and faculty called on the administration to “proclaim Harvard Memorial Church as part of the network of sanctuary churches that provide a refuge for students facing deportation proceedings.”
At Brown, students and staff wrote a letter to the school “to request that you investigate the possibility of our campus serving as a sanctuary for our students, our staff members and their family members who face imminent deportation.”