Yale Students Launch New Protest, Equate Calhoun With Hitler and Bin Laden

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By Emily Zanotti | 12:54 pm, August 29, 2016

Yale students decided to commemorate Freshman move-in weekend by holding what they thought would be a massive, spectacular protest designed to persuade the administration to change the name of Calhoun College.

Several members of Unidad Latina en Acción showed up to pressure the administration to “CHANGE THE NAME.”

The freshmen were unmoved.

Determined to convince the students that Calhoun College was a triggering name for minority students on campus—because Yale grad and former Vice President John C. Calhoun owned slaves and was an advocate for the Southern agrarian lifestyle—protesters then took to “changing” the name themselves.

They first tried Hitler.”

Then, “Osama bin Laden.”

Protesters told Yale Daily News that the name was supposed to cause incoming students to feel the same anger minority students felt. “So now you know how people of color feel,” one of the organizers said. “And we will keep on doing it until you get the point, Yale.”

At least one student tried to take a more positive approach, taping over the Calhoun College sign with an appropriate name honoring minority achievement.

Not to be outdone by more productive measures, the students threatened to press on with more offensive names.

Yale has said that it will again consider renaming Calhoun College, though it dismissed the idea in April, at the time encouraging students to confront unsavory American traditions and teach about them, rather than try to erase them.

Earlier this year, a Yale cafeteria worker resigned after smashing a historic stained glass window in Calhoun College’s residence that depicted two slaves picking cotton. Yale later asked that charged be dropped against the man, and it decided to rehire him after an outpouring of support from students and staff who said the window breaking was an act of civil disobedience.

Yale has installed a plaque inside another college, Ezra Stiles, commemorating several slaves who benefited from Yale-encouraged education, but were not, ultimately, freed.

The effort did little to sway campus social justice warriors, however—or freshmen, who administrators insist will be allowed to form their own opinions about Calhoun College’s controversial name.