The Daily Illini, the university newspaper publication for the University of Illinois, recently ran a letter to the editor from David Green, a "university academic professional," who scolded students for their chants of, “USA, USA!” following a moment of silence for the victims of 9/11 at a university football game. In his letter to the editor, Green dismissed Americans' 9/11 observances because they suggest that lives of Americans are "more valuable" than those of Afghan or Iraqi civilians who have died in war.
Green also suggested the hijackers had just cause for attacking the U.S. on 9/11 because of "genuine grievances in the Islamic world regarding American imperialism"; and memorializing 9/11 suggests that the U.S. has been justified in "the subsequent killing of hundreds of thousands in so-called retaliation."
In response to observances like the university's moment of silence during a Saturday football game, Green decried students' patriotic chants and accompanying military flyover:
This was neither patriotism nor remembrance in any justifiable sense, but politicization, militarism, propaganda and bellicosity. The University is a public institution that encompasses the political views of all, not just the most (falsely) “patriotic.” Athletic planners should cease such exploitation for political purposes. They might at least consider how most Muslim students, American or otherwise, would respond to this nativist display; or better, Muslims and others that live their lives under the threat of our planes, drones and soldiers.
Green went on to condemn the "overwhelmingly white" and "privileged" student body for their "obnoxious, fake-macho, chicken-hawk chant" while "poverty-drafted" men and women serving in the U.S. military "fight and die in illegal and immoral wars for the control of oil." He concludes his vitriol by calling on University of Illinois administrators to ban these patriotic observances from university events because these kinds of commemorations "cannot be separated from implicit justifications for state-sponsored killing."
Is this what the free exchange of different ideas is like on university campuses nowadays?