We previously wrote about Anna Shireman-Grabowski, a Middlebury College student who, with non-student activists, removed a flag memorial on 9/11 this year remembering the victims of the World Trade Center attack, claiming solidarity with the Native American Abenaki tribe:
My intention was not to cause pain but to visibilize [sic] the necessity of honoring all human life and to help a friend heal from the violence of genocide that she carries with her on a daily basis as an indigenous person. While the American flags on the Middlebury hillside symbolize to some the loss of innocent lives in New York, to others they represent centuries of bloody conquest and mass murder. As a settler on stolen land, I do not have the luxury of grieving without an eye to power. Three thousand flags is a lot, but the campus is not big enough to hold a marker for every life sacrificed in the history of American conquest and colonialism.
The Abenaki tribe, however, wanted no part of Middlebury 9/11 flag-grabbing, for many reasons, not the least of which was that the lawn in question was not a tribal burial ground as Shireman-Grabowski claimed.
Now Middlebury College has suspended Shireman-Grabowski, via the Addison Independent:
The lone Middlebury College student that took part in the vandalism of a 9/11 memorial on the college’s campus has been disciplined, the college said in a statement.
Anna Shireman-Grabowski was suspended for one year for violating several college policies, including “General Conduct Standards, Respect for Persons and Respect for Property.” The college did not name Shireman-Grabowski, but she identified herself as a participant in an online post shortly after the incident. Excerpts of this post were published in the Independent last month….
Shireman-Grabowski appealed the suspension, but it was upheld Oct. 9 by the Middlebury Community Judicial Board. The CJB is made up of four students, one staff member, two faculty members and one dean. Middlebury College spokesman Stephen Diehl said Shireman-Grabowski, a senior, will be eligible for readmission in the fall of 2014.
Middlebury College’s official statement states in part as follows:
During the incident, several Middlebury students confronted the individuals and following a brief confrontation were able to retrieve some of the flags. Those flags were returned to their positions. Other students purchased additional flags and added those to the commemorative memorial.
On Sept. 24, the College convened the Middlebury Community Judicial Board to consider disciplinary charges brought against the student. The board found the student responsible for violating the following College policies: General Conduct Standards, Respect for Persons, and Respect for Property. It imposed a sanction of a one-year suspension, which was upheld on appeal on Oct. 9.
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.