- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 7, 2015

The student government at the University of California, Irvine, voted Tuesday to remove all American flags from one of their rooms, arguing that the flag could be considered offensive and anti-inclusive.

The bill — which passed with six yays, four nays and two abstaining – would remove all flags, including the Stars and Stripes, from the lobby of the building that houses the undergraduate governing body, known as the Associated Students of University of California, Irvine (ASUCI).

Written by student Matthew Guevara, the resolution says that “flags construct paradigms of conformity and sets homogenized standards for others to obtain, which in this country typically are idolized as freedom, equality and democracy,” Campus Reform reported Friday.

It goes on to say that the American flag “has been flown in instances of colonialism and imperialism.” Therefore in the effort of making the “main lobby space as inclusive as possible,” all flags will be removed so as not to make students uncomfortable.

Mr. Guevara’s resolution says that the ASUCI supports freedom of speech, but adds that “freedom of speech, in a space that aims to be as inclusive as possible, can be interpreted as hate speech,” Campus Reform reported.

The bill concludes by saying that any other “decorative item” will be removed from the space if a student makes a complaint about it.

SEE ALSO: Communist prom theme chosen for U.S. high school: ‘Prom-munism’

ASUCI President Reza Zomorrodian took to the group’s Facebook page to denounce the decision.

“I stand firmly against this piece of legislation,” Mr. Zomorrodian said. “Though I understand the author’s intent and supporters’ intent, I disagree with the solution Council has come to.”

• Phillip Swarts can be reached at pswarts@washingtontimes.com.

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