Students at Ramapo College were going to have an American themed BBQ co-sponsored by College Republicans and the College Democrats, but were forced to change the theme because the administration deemed it too “offensive.”
According to emails obtained by Campus Reform, Ariana Rivera, the Assistant Residence Director of Bischoff Hall sent an email to the two student groups, inviting them to set up tables at the BBQ Bischoff and Mackin Halls to promote their organizations as well as encourage students to register to vote.
On September 14, two days before the scheduled event, Rivera wrote to President Taylor Gilson of the College Republicans telling her that Bischoff Hall would no longer be co-sponsoring with the CRs because the American theme was “considered offensive.”
Gilson responded to the email asking why the American theme was considered offensive, and if the “offensive” concerns came from students or the administration.
“To be honest, I’m not sure. I think it was administrative,” Rivera replied. “I was told that our advertising was too ‘military and recruitment-oriented,’ because we had the Uncle Sam saying ‘I want you…’ I think? However, we saw other posters with that same idea, so I really don’t know.”
Matthew Searfoss, vice president of the Ramapo CRs, told Campus Reform he was “shocked” when he discovered the American theme and Uncle Sam advertisement posters were denounced by the administration.
“Gilson and I asked the RA for more information as we were shocked and upset over the actions of the administration,” Searfoss declared. “The RA said that they had been using the famous ‘I want you’ image of Uncle Sam in several posters around campus to get the word out about the event, and the administration thought that these posters were too militaristic and not inclusive of the entire student population.”
Gilson said the Uncle Sam flyers in question said simply, “We want you…to come to our BBQ.”
If students and administration really found this theme too offensive, they should have just stayed in the “Safe Spaces” on campus until the BBQ was over.
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