A memorial honoring law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty was met with protest from a socialist student group at California State University, Fullerton this week.
According to a press release put out by the CSUF College Republicans, members of Students for Quality Education (SQE), a socialist group funded by the California Faculty Association, stood fifty feet from the memorial and handed out flyers that read, “Why Blue Lives Matter Is Problematic” and “Black and Brown civilians do not want to place police lives on a sacrificial pyre in exchange for their own.”
As part of the event marking Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, the CR members encouraged students to place ribbons with names of fallen officers on a wooden frame, and invited them to write thank you messages on sticky notes to post on a police car that was parked nearby.
The students later attached the notes to a pin board and gifted it to the University Police Department.
CR Event Coordinator Hansol Suh said he was appalled by SQE’s attempt to politicize the event.
“The purpose of our event is to remember fallen officers who have died protecting the community,” said Suh.
“We honor and respect those we consider heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice. I’m shocked and disturbed that this event would be politicized as anything other than a memorial for the fallen.”
The CR press release acknowledges that the socialist students have the right to a peaceful protest, but expresses disappointment in the manner with which SQE members conducted themselves.
“Although we recognize the right to peacefully protest, we are disappointed that a memorial to honor fallen officers was met with such animosity,” the group states.
“However, the event was a huge success and we appreciate everyone who came out to thank our campus police, as well as commemorate the sacrifices made by our country’s fallen heroes.”
In a statement to Campus Reform, CSUF said that while it does not comment on the activities of clubs on campus, the university does support the freedom of expression of student groups.
“As a practice, the university does not comment on extracurricular activities of our clubs,” a university spokesperson said.
“We do, however, support the freedom of expression and the ability of our many student groups to host events on campus.”
Campus Reform reached out to SQE for comment, but did not receive a response in time for publication.