By Matthew Salzer
Earlier this month six members of the legislative council of UC Irvine’s Associated Students organization voted to ban all flags from their small office. The vote was prompted by a conflict between students who were taking the American flag down, while others were pinning it back onto the wall.
As the members were looking at this small part of their world, they didn’t think about the bigger picture. Before the executive cabinet could veto the decision, UCI’s campus was hit with accusations of restricting freedom of speech and debates about whether the American flag, or flags in general, represented free or hate speech to the international students.
It is understandable why the student government tried to calm the situation down but they overstepped their bounds when they banned an American flag in any part of the UCI campus. Regardless of how offended international or other students may feel about the flag, they are going to school on American soil in a public institution. This is America, where the flag is the symbol of many things to many people.