An Evening of Dance

College chooses the right way to protest

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February 6, 2017

10:49 PM

The debate has raged from the corridors of U.S. Congress, to every state in the union and to college campuses, including the College of William and Mary’s. The new immigration ban resulted in the detainment of a few hundred people throughout the country. However, the effects and the blowback have been felt on campus too. Opinions on campus remain divided on the subject. As the chairman of the College Republicans, the opinions of our members are not uniform regarding the ban. Some members support it to varying degrees; others do not. Some feel it is an appropriate measure to take to ensure the safety of Americans. Others people feel that it is an implicit way to restrict Muslim immigration. In terms of the actual effects of the ban, I personally feel it will hurt our image on the world stage and may alienate our key Middle Eastern allies.

 It also may affect some students in a much more direct manner. Students from these seven nations included in the ban will now be put in a tough position regarding their travel arrangements.

The ban also affects activities and people on campus. I heard from a friend that a trip organized by the chemistry department is in limbo because the professor who is accompanying the students on the trip has an Iranian passport. It’s upsetting to me that students’ ability to learn is being hampered by this policy. It also may affect some students in a much more direct manner. Students from these seven nations included in the ban will now be put in a tough position regarding their travel arrangements. Fortunately for those affected, a freeze on the new restrictions was issued by numerous judges, and a challenge to reinstate the ban was defeated.

Whether you agree with the reason for the protest or not, I think everyone can agree that it was done in a proper and respectful manner, which unfortunately is becoming rarer nowadays, especially on college campuses.

After the executive order was announced, some students took to protesting it on campus. The right to protest is a fundamental one included under the First Amendment of the Constitution. And just like the Constitution intended, the protest was peaceful. Some colleges have had problems with peaceful protest. Most recently, students at Berkeley rioted over the visit of the right-wing provocateur, Milo Yiannopoulos. Another merit to the protest here was that it was in response to something of importance, unlike many demonstrations that happen in college. Instead of wanting a small statue removed from campus for fear it would cause emotional harm, something trivial in my opinion, they showed their displeasure with a policy that would have profound affects for our country, and our campus. Whether you agree with the reason for the protest or not, I think everyone can agree that it was done in a proper and respectful manner, which unfortunately is becoming rarer nowadays, especially on college campuses.

Email Carson Cameron at [email protected]

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  • Carson Cameron