When Stanford told one of the fraternities on campus to remove an American flag placed outside of their house because it could be “offensive” to others, members of the fraternity couldn’t believe their ears. It didn’t take them long to come up with an epic counter-offer for the administration.
According to a recent article in The Stanford Review, a now-defunct fraternity experienced a bit of a run-in with the school’s administration after proudly displaying an American flag in front of their building. “An administrator encouraged Sigma Chi to take down the American flag flown in front of its house in order to improve its image on campus,” states the article.
According to opinion author Antigone Xenopoulos, who recounted the story told to her by student Pablo Lozano, “Sigma Chi sought to make itself ‘an ally of the university.'” In doing so, the fraternity was assigned an administrator to serve as a liaison between Residential Education and Sigma Chi. That administrator was only referred to as “Mr. Z” in the article.
Xenopoulos wrote, “One night during Autumn 2017, Lozano recounted, Mr. Z was invited to eat dinner at Sigma Chi. While discussing improving the fraternity’s image with the university, Mr. Z offhandedly suggested that Sigma Chi remove the potentially discomforting symbol outside: the American flag flown in front of the house.”
“Mr. Z urged Sigma Chi to consider the image being presented to the rest of campus by flying the flag out front,” added Xenopoulos. “He furthered that if Sigma Chi wished to break away from stereotypes that plagued the house and to change its perception on campus, its members should contemplate un-hoisting the American flag.”
“While this remark was just one in a larger discussion on rebranding the house, it stands out. Mr. Z’s recommendation insinuated not only that the flag made others uncomfortable but that its being flown tainted Sigma Chi’s reputation and, presumably, worsened its chance of survival,” Xenopoulos wrote. “Lozano understood Mr. Z to imply that the American flag, as a symbol, could be intimidating, aggressive or alienating. Mr. Z’s tone further signaled to Lozano that he found the mere sight of the American flag to be offensive.”
“Lozano recounted that the more the house talked about Mr. Z’s suggestion, the more it bothered them. Many found the proposal weird. The remark was, according to Lozano, out of the blue and incongruent with the candid rapport they had shared with Mr. Z up and until then,” Xenopoulos continued.
“Lozano later observed that right down the road from Sigma Chi, an American flag is flown outside Stanford’s Post Office,” she added. “Similarly, he noted, an American flag is flown outside Green Library’s Bing Wingand was once flown outside Memorial Auditorium, which commemorates fallen Stanford soldiers from WWI onward. According to Lozano’s knowledge, Mr. Z raised no objections to the Dominican flag flown by a student from his bedroom window in Sigma Chi or to the Palestinian flag which was hung across the street at Columbae.”
After careful contemplation, Sigma Chi declined to remove their flag simply to appease the administrator. Instead, they went out and purchased an even larger American flag for the front of their house. “The following day, by Lozano’s doing, Sigma Chi upgraded from a three-by-five-foot flag to a four-by-six-foot flag. The former flag was then framed and placed on display inside the house,” wrote Xenopoulos.
It is uncertain whether Sigma Chi ultimately disbanded as a result of this debacle over the American flag, but one thing is abundantly clear: Lozano and his pals who stood in resistance to the liberal administrator who tried to bully them into removing their flag ought to be applauded. Rarely do we see this sort of patriotic fortitude from the younger generation, especially within liberal academia. Please show these young adults your support by sharing this story.