- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

UPDATE (5:18 p.m.):

In a tweet Wednesday afternoon, the Center for Campus Involvement said it planned to show “American Sniper” in a separate forum “that provides an appropriate space for dialogue & reflection.”

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The University of Michigan canceled a scheduled movie screening of “American Sniper” on Tuesday after nearly 300 students and others complained the film glorifies a “mass killer” and perpetuates anti-Muslim stereotypes.

An online petition, titled a “collective letter from Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) and Muslim students on campus,” accused the school of “tolerating dangerous anti-Muslim and anti-MENA propaganda” by showing the Chris Kyle biopic, The College Fix reported.

“The movie American Sniper not only tolerates but promotes anti-Muslim and anti-MENA rhetoric and sympathizes with a mass killer,” the letter reads. “Chris Kyle was a racist who took a disturbing stance on murdering Iraqi civilians. Middle Eastern characters in the film are not lent an ounce of humanity and watching this movie is provocative and unsafe to MENA and Muslim students who are too often reminded of how little the media and world values their lives.”

The petition achieved it goal in getting the school to cancel the showing, which was scheduled for Friday. The Center for Campus Involvement, which oversees student activities and is run by university employees, announced its decision Tuesday on social media, The College Fix reported.

“We deeply regret causing harm to members of our community, and appreciate the thoughtful feedback provided to us by students and staff alike,” the center said. “We in the Center for Campus Involvement and the UMix Late Night program did not intend to exclude any students or communities on campus through showing this film. Nevertheless, as we know, intent and impact can be very different things. While our intent was to show a film, the impact of the content was harmful, and made students feel unsafe and unwelcome at our program. UMix should always be a safe space for students to engage, unwind, and create community with others, and we commit to listening to and learning from our community in the interest of fostering that environment. “

The Center for Campus Involvementtweeted that “Paddington,” a PG-rated movie about a stuffed bear’s misadventures, will be shown instead of “American Sniper.”

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