Thursday, May 23, 2024

University of Southern California cancels main graduation event amid anti-Israel protest backlash

HomeWARUniversity of Southern California cancels main graduation event amid anti-Israel protest backlash

The University of Southern California is feeling the heat after shocking students by scrapping its long-awaited main commencement ceremony for 2024 grads. The drastic move comes as the campus descended into mayhem, with cops arresting nearly 100 anti-Israel agitators for trespassing amid raging protests.

In a whiplash-inducing announcement Thursday, USC leadership dropped a bombshell – informing seniors their quintessential graduation moment on the main stage would be nixed. Why? New “safety measures” made processing the typical 65,000-person crowd logistically impossible this year, the university claimed.

Instead of the traditional pomp and circumstance before friends and families gathered en masse, USC will host more modest school-specific ceremonies between May 8-11. But getting into those smaller affairs won’t be easy either – guests must present tickets and clear intensive security screenings with X-rays and clear bag checks.

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The stunning decision sparked a firestorm of criticism accusing USC of capitulating to the unruly anti-Israel mob. Top conservative voices and lawmakers blasted the move as utterly unacceptable at an elite American university.

“Just a disgrace. Have the graduation and arrest anyone who disrupts it,” fumed Fox News contributor Marc Thiessen.

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“Pro-Hamas ‘protesters’ have wreaked havoc on one of America’s great universities. As a result, USC is canceling its main commencement, a long-standing tradition celebrating all their hard-working students. This is beyond unacceptable,” Rep. Mark Alford, R-Mo., raged.

Rep. Rudy Yakym, R-Ind., lamented: “Students, family, and friends all look forward to celebrating graduation. Now because of the pro-Hamas mob, they can’t. This shouldn’t be happening in America.”

Beyond the political sphere, Fox News’ Bill Melugin highlighted how the Class of 2024 may have missed both high school and college commencements thanks to the pandemic’s disruptions and now USC’s concession. Hedge fund vet Tom Hearden questioned if the pricey USC degree was even worth it without the ceremonial rite of passage.

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As fallout mounted, some students and parents were surely wondering – did USC just massively fumble its biggest annual event by caving to a rowdy band of campus radicals? The fury showed no signs of subsiding as commencement draws near.

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Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee is a prolific author who provides commentary and analysis on business, finance, politics, sports, and current events on his website Opportuneist. With over a decade of experience in journalism and blogging, Mezhar aims to deliver well-researched insights and thought-provoking perspectives on important local and global issues in society.

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