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Nov 23, 2016 09:24 AM EST

Hampshire College Bans U.S. Flag After Hate Crimes Surge

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Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts has decided to ban the American flag in its campus. This comes after a flag was burned down due to protests.

The Boston Globe reported that Hampshire College president Jonathan Lash has deemed the flag as a "disruptive symbol." The administration initially replaced the burned flag, taking to mind the "the strong feelings of those who see the flag as a statement of the best of the country."

However, last Friday, Lash sent an email to the campus community saying that the flagpole would remain bare until next semester. He also admitted that, with the removal of the flag, the school will instead focus on addressing "racist, misogynistic, Islamophobic, anti-immigrant, anti-Semitic, and anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and behaviors."

According to Campus Reform, Hampshire College will not be flying the U.S. flag for the time being. It has also banned other flags to be put up in the campus.

"Some months ago, the Hampshire College Board of Trustees adopted a policy of periodically flying the flag at half-staff to mourn deaths from violence around the world," Lash wrote in the email. "Earlier this week, in the current environment of escalating hate-based violence, we made the decision to fly Hampshire's U.S. flag at half-staff for a time while the community delved deeper into the meaning of the flag and its presence on our campus."

He did acknowledge that the action has been painful to faculty and students who are veterans or families of veterans. He urges the community to "insist on diversity, inclusion, and equity from our leaders and in our communities."

Lash also aims for constructive resistance to those who oppose these values. Moreover, he wants everyone to work actively and passionately toward justice and positive change at the university and in the world.

It was previously reported that Donald Trump's victory at the election has increased the number of hostile acts done against minority students in campuses across the nation. Universities have been trying to pacify fears about the nation's future by organizing meetings and counseling sessions.

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