By Samantha Grant
Southern Methodist University (SMU) is prohibiting the display of a 9/11 memorial for the first time since the memorial’s presentation in 2010.
The display, which is located on the Dallas Hall Lawn, a centrally located part of campus, is said to be a violation of a new policy at SMU. The policy states that the school must respect “the rights of all members of the academic community to be free from coercion and harassment.”
The memorial consists of nearly 3,000 flags, representing every life lost in the attacks on September 11, 2001. The display also consists of signs that read “9/11, Never Forget” and “Young Americans for Freedom,” referring to a student organization that set up the demonstration.
According to members of the Young Americans for Freedom, they are shocked that SMU views their memorial as offensive to members of the student body and campus administrators. The SMU administration issued the following statement:
“The University respects the right of SMU community members to express their opinions as individuals with varying points of view and interests. The university also respects the right of all members of the academic community to be free from coercion and harassment. Reasonable limitations may be placed on the time, place and manner of such expression activities in order to serve the interest of health and safety, prevent interference in the conduct of University business, and protect against the infringement of the rights of others. Because we seek truth, we encourage the expression of ideas, accept challenges to our assumptions, and treat those whom we question as colleagues sharing a common purpose.”