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HomeGeneralColumbia University Student Tears Diploma on Commencement Stage as an Act of...

Columbia University Student Tears Diploma on Commencement Stage as an Act of Defiance

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A picture of a pro Palestine protest.
Source: Pinterest

Following recent worries about protests on campus, a Columbian student has made the news. On Monday, the graduating student destroyed her diploma on stage while wearing zip-tie handcuffs. This action was to protest against the anti-Israel demonstrations at Columbia University.

The Columbia School of Social Work graduate was seen online parading the stage in Arabian attire at her graduation ceremony, with her hands bound with black metal cords and zip ties. 

An Arabian scarf known as a “keffiyeh” with black, brown, and white markings was wrapped around the shoulders of her blue graduation gown.

The graduate collected her diploma, faced the audience, and tore it into numerous pieces. As a result of the zip-ties she was wearing, it took longer than she expected. However, in the end, she hurled the torn paper onto the floor over her head.

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ALSO READ: Boston Police Arrests 100 Protesters Amid Crackdown on Campus Palestine Protests

Then she whipped off the headgear she wore during her graduation and revealed its back part to the people around her. Since the camera could only capture a side of the cap, it could not observe it. The message targeted at the audience was embedded in the cap, with words and images imprinted on it.

The other students, in an organized effort, wore different Arabic outfits below and above their gowns, along with Gallabias, while spotting handcuffs. This was to mimic the look of the captured Palestinian war prisoners.

Among the students, a graduate had the name of the Hamas commander, Mazen Jamal Al-Natsheh, written on the top of her headgear. Finally, there was clapping for two more graduates who lifted a placard that said “Free Palestine.”

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The class-day festivities began on Friday and were completed without disturbance. According to a Columbia official, thousands of Columbia alumni and their families had already celebrated the event.

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The class days consist of the graduation itself and other graduation-related events. Additionally, they get to rejoice at their unbelievable accomplishment in the remaining graduates as they embark on a new journey.

Some smaller events will take the place of the major graduating ceremony at Columbia University. The event was postponed last Monday due to violent anti-Israel demonstrations.

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Large-scale graduation exercises on our campus raised security issues that, regrettably, were unavoidable, according to Columbia spokesperson Ben Chang last week. We share the same profound disappointment with the decision as our pupils.

Pro-Palestine demonstrations on college campuses have persisted since Columbia University students established an encampment in support of Gaza on April 17 and called for the university to withdraw from Israel.

ALSO READ: Police Arrests Over 30 Students at GWU’s Pro-Palestinian Encampment 

Since last month, there have been over 2,000 arrests at US schools amid intensely divisive discussions over the freedom to demonstrate, the boundaries of free speech, and allegations of antisemitism.

There are also sit-ins and demonstrations happening on college campuses around Europe, notably in France, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

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