Black LLC incident still under investigation

Placement of Blue Lives Matter flag sparks major discussions on campus and social media


Courtesy of @unity_empowerment on Instagram

This post on the Instagram account @unity_empowerment detailed the incident that occurred in the Black LLC on Oct. 26, gaining more than 650 comments from students and alumni.

Rachel Dvareckas, Managing Editor

The investigation into an incident that occurred last week in the Black Living Learning Community (LLC) is still underway, according to Vice President of Student Life John King. On Oct. 26, residents of the Black LLC noticed a Blue Lives Matter flag displayed on a resident’s door. These students felt it was a sign of disrespect as the Blue Lives Matter movement is seen as a countermovement to Black Lives Matter.

The incident was initially brought to the public’s attention via the Instagram page @unity_empowerment, with a post explaining the incident gaining more than 650 comments from current students and alumni. Many expressed their disdain with the behavior of the student who hung the flag.

Students like @thecharlotteruss on Instagram commented saying “never have I been more embarrassed and disappointed to attend this institution. This isn’t a crazy concept, it is basic human rights. if you can’t see that maybe you shouldn’t have been accepted into college in the first place.”

“We all know that this is not about politics or “just a flag being hung up.” It is about the clear intention of one student wanting to corrupt one of the few spaces BIPOC have on this campus,” commented “thatsokatv.”

A few users commented in support of the student’s behavior, arguing the student had the right to express their opinion.

“Whether you agree with the flag or not, he has the right to have those views without you guys saying he should be expelled,” @thelukewing commented on the Instagram post.

But many were quick to bring up underlying issues with the student’s action and push to hold Residence Life and Housing and the university itself accountable to give a response.


@craeside said, “Complete joke if the university doesn’t address this appropriately.”

The university decided not to comment on the post as they did not want to cause any more issues than were present in the comment section. During the Student Senate meeting on Nov. 2, King said the university will be compiling the comments and reviewing them. He said they may have conversations with students who posted concerning comments as the university did over the summer during Black Lives Matter protests.

The university responded to the incident four days after it occurred with an all-student email on Friday, Oct. 30, in which King initially said the university was investigating the matter. Director of Student Conduct Diana Proto has been working on the investigation and Director of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Dr. Zoila Quezada has been consulted as well.

King has publicly apologized to the students in the Black LLC as he feels this is a situation that should never have happened. He recognizes that students in the LLC were disrupted and harmed due to the incident.

“This incident has led to an immediate review by Residence Life focusing on the application, placement and orientation processes for all students assigned to a Living Learning Community. These processes will be changed and improved moving forward,” King said.

Director of Residence Life and Housing Abbas Hill has been working on the matter alongside King and Proto.

“In addition to our immediate on-call response and support to this incident, our staff has worked with Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to support the students within the Black LLC. Our two offices facilitated a meeting with the students of Black LLC (accompanied by the presence of Dr. King) and we are also working to coordinate a Support Meeting for our Black, Indigenous and Students of Color,” Hill told The Hawks’ Herald.

“The Department of Residence Life and Housing supports Black Lives Matter and we support and stand in solidarity with our Black, Indigenous and Students of Color. We acknowledge the harm and pain that this incident and subsequent comments have caused and we are doing the work to continue supporting the students who have been impacted,” Hill said.