A group of 5 young protesters decided that 2,997 small 9/11 memorial flags placed in a
Middlebury Collegecampus lawn needed to be removed because they were on top of a Native American burial ground yesterday.
“I got there just as they were taking the very last of them out of the ground and putting them in piles,” Ben Kinney, president, College Republicans, told Middlebury Campus news. “At first, I the group was comprised of College Democrats helping put the flags away before the rain rolled in, but then I realised what they were doing.”
Witnesses say the protesters claimed the flags were on a “sacred Abenaki burial site” and that they were removing them to protest “American imperialism.”
Vermont has a long history with the Abenakis — native to the New England area. The University of Vermont has done research which concluded that several Abenaki women had been sterilized.
Regardless, this is a college campus, under administrative management of the Middlebury staff — and the lawn is not an officially recognised burial ground of the Abenaki people.
Kinney and his crew went through the proper channels to get permission, and spent two hours placing the flags in the lawn.
Protesters said nothing could “penetrate” the earth above the burial ground.
The student body didn’t take it sitting down though.
Students gathered later to replant the 2,997 flags, reports Middlebury news.
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