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Confederate flag truck

The image of a Confederate flag on this semi-tractor on the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse campus Friday led to a discussion this week about freedom of speech and the value of diversity.

A Confederate flag on University of Wisconsin-La Crosse grounds has stirred up debate between advocates of free speech and proponents of inclusivity after a campus official apologized for the “fear and angst” caused by the banner.

The controversy arose after Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Paula Knudson received complaints, both in the form of phone calls and official “hate and bias” reports, about the flag’s presence on the grille cover of a semi-tractor parked on the student center construction site.

“It was numerous. Calls started coming, people started coming in, and other offices started calling in,” Knudson said Wednesday.

The message she received was “essentially, this is hurtful,” Knudson said, and called the university to action.

Among those who filed reports was physics senior Matthew Dreis, who saw the flag on his way to class Friday morning. Dreis was disappointed to see what he considers hate speech displayed in the heart of campus.

“I was let down. I really hoped we were beyond that in 2015,” Dreis said.

While Dreis understands the display is protected by the First Amendment, he said displaying the flag shows bad taste and indicates a larger problem on campus.

“That’s very inappropriate. I think we have problems with institutionalized racism at our school and when we see it at the construction site of the physical building where students are getting their education it solidifies that there’s a problem with our campus atmosphere,” Dreis said.

Knudson asked UW-L Executive Director of Facilities Douglas Pearson to speak to the construction site superintendent, who asked the driver of the truck to remove it. The driver complied without complaint.

In an email sent to students Friday afternoon, Knudson apologized for “the fear and angst caused by (the flag’s) presence” and explained that the flag had been removed.

Knudson’s email raised worries in senior Zachary Allen, who was disturbed by the suggestion that the university was infringing on someone’s constitutional rights.

“The way it was phrased made it sound very much like it was a forcible removal of this image of the Confederate flag. I was very concerned,” Allen said.

While Allen agrees the flag sends a poor message, he doesn’t feel it’s the university’s role to force its removal on campus.

“Nope, I don’t support the Confederate flag … I don’t agree with its use, but they still have every right under the law to do so,” Allen said.

Allen contacted both Knudson and UW-L Chancellor Joe Gow to share his views and began to organize a demonstration to protect freedom of speech on campus. In a follow-up email Tuesday, Knudson explained her actions, saying she will continue to defend free speech, as well as work to protect students’ “right to live and be educated free from hatred.”

“On Friday, I saw firsthand the genuine fear of some of our students. Many of us are privileged to have not experienced fear of this kind, so it may be harder to understand,” Knudson said.

She further clarified that no one was forced to remove the symbol, rather the university made a request that the large flag be removed while on campus property, and the truck’s driver “willingly complied with the request.”

Gow released a statement Tuesday night defending Knudson’s actions, saying she responded appropriately and in accordance with UW-L values.

In an interview Wednesday, Gow said the university has “to balance free expression with welcoming campus climate.”

Gow met with students Tuesday, including Kalon Bell, president of the UW-L Black Student Unity and a broadcast and senior in digital media communication. Bell joined other students in explaining the flag’s significance as a symbol of generations of oppression, slavery and hate that can be a painful reminder for UW-L’s students of color that they are not always welcome.

“For me, when I was younger, I think I was more fearful, because I didn’t know the intentions behind it,” Bell said. “I had the general understanding that if you flew something like that, you didn’t like people who looked like me.”

Now that he’s an adult, Bell says he views people flying the Confederate flag with frustration and confusion.

“It’s just frustrating because I don’t see how people are connecting to that symbol. I don’t see how they think that’s an acceptable symbol anywhere,” Bell said.

After the meeting, Gow denounced the flag as a “symbol of hate and, in South Carolina, murder of people because of their skin color,” said Gow, referring to the racially motivated shootings of nine African-Americans at a Charleston, S.C., church in June that prompted the removal of the flag from South Carolina Capitol’s grounds.

“I know that people will say that it has a lot of meanings, and it does, but in light of what happened in South Carolina, it clearly is a racist symbol,” added Gow.

Gow clarified Knudson’s actions, saying that had the driver refused the request of university staff, UW-L would have followed guidelines included in an overview by the American Civil Liberties Union and not required him to remove the flag out of respect for his freedom of speech.

“As this ACLU review indicates, our actions involving the Confederate flag on Friday were entirely consistent with both protecting free speech and responding to an offensive display that was inconsistent with our campus values,” said Gow.

Gow added that the university will respond in the same way if a similar situation arises.

In response to the questions raised by the issue, UW-L Student Affairs will host a teach-in discussion about free speech, the Confederate flag and inclusivity from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday in the Hall of Nations in Centennial Hall.

“What we want to do is give people an appropriate venue to have discourse and also to have information in all of those situations shared by people who are experienced and knowledgeable in all of those respective fields,” Knudson said.

Students on both sides are satisfied with the resolution, which includes an open forum for everybody to speak.

“The education component is everything. I think so often people act out of ignorance and they don’t understand the impact that it has — in this context, the impact that they have on students of color,” Bell said.

Allen and Dreis agreed that it was a positive step forward.

“That’s where we’re going to get understanding. That’s why we do the things that we do to bring attention to the issues, so we can have that dialogue,” Dreis said.

“On Friday, I saw firsthand the genuine fear of some of our students. Many of us are privileged to have not experienced fear of this kind, so it may be harder to understand.” Paula Knudson, vice chancellor for Student Affairs

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City government reporter

Jourdan Vian is a reporter and columnist covering local government and city issues for the La Crosse Tribune. You can contact her at 608-791-8218.

(171) comments

sylvester

The students seen Their first redneck , a driver wih teeth gone, the rest of His teeth brown from smoking, tatoos galore and a old Earnhart jacket

Redwall

Excuse me, now that I have taken care of that frightening Dukes of Hazzard flag thingy, I have to go back to my dorm room safe zone and addle my brain with some rap music denigrating women and glorifying gang violence, drugs and thugs.


Machiavelli

Up next, Swastikas and photos of Charles Manson plastered all over UW campuses. Weirdsconsin, the state of Ed Gein and Jeffrey Dahmer... there are probably more than a few supporters of those two kooks in town too!

Civil War Journal: War Crimes--The Death Camps

www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpIRL1ieRk0


AirForce Retired

The students need to learn that no matter their opinions or beliefs, in the United States, the driver also has rights, and one is to display that flag should he choose. If they really had fear and angst, what they should actually have done is find the driver, and tell him, that while they know he has the right to display it, they find it personally insulting and not appropriate. They would have then acknowledged that the driver also has rights, and conquered their fear of the flag. But as my first posting said, they need to grow up. Its a big world, the one persons personal beliefs do not make the others wrong, just different. America is supposed to be a country of personal beliefs, rights and responsibilities, not a single individuals taking priority over others.

Opus

Nonsense! The students did the right thing! Instead of confronting, they went to the Dean of Students to expressed their concerns. She investigated the situation, ask the driver to remove the flag and he did. THAT is what grownups do!

lutefisk

well. .i hate. ...stuff. n junk

DMoney

Wow. These kids better just stay in mommy's basement and never leave home. They certainly better never go South of the Mason-Dixon line or their little feelings might be just crushed. UWL kids--life ain't all sunshine and rainbows. You are not the only ones free to express yourselves with your protests and rainbow colors. Other people have other views and guess what? You have to tolerate them. Deal with it and toughen up.

Snow Cougar Mary Burke

These two videos pretty much sums up what is happening to our children at the hands of liberals in our educational systems.

~-~-~-~

Political Correctness at University College: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgT5TO42PUY

~-~-~-~

Modern Educayshun: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKcWu0tsiZM

~-~-~-~

If you love your children, get them out of the public education system - NOW!

Clarification

This is getting absurd. Bring back the draft for males and females so hey really have something to be upset about.

The Professor

This is pathetic, political correctness once again rears it's ugly head. Sad too, some of the writers want to present as being well educated, same too with some of the subjects referenced in the article. Folks, the "Stars and Bars", the "Dixie Flag", call it what you wish is NOT, never was the Confederate Flag, it never represented the Southern States. Educate yourself, complete an Internet search. The flag has a place of honor in the South and is held in high esteem by Southern veterans. The flag was later hijacked by the KKK, Neo Nazis and Skin Heads, they too occasionally display the American flag. As you ought not be fooled by these idiot groups, don't be fooled by the ill informed PC group.

Mac

It has become a de facto symbol of the rebel states, those that seceded to protect the institution of slavery. It is no coincidence that it was resurrected in the 1950's and 60's as civil rights and desegregation became hot button issues in our country.

spaceis411

Mac--

Thank you - the professor has no awareness of actual history as regards the flag. Its origin is irrelevant. When blacks began to create social problems (like asking for equal treatment) in the south (and in the 20th century), they adopted this flag to represent their values.

To be clear, the war was NOT fought over states' rights. it was fought over the right to own human beings.

jimmyabbz

Great points Professor!

Opus

Those "veterans" would all be dead now, Professor.
As for the folks who "hijacked" the flag....they knew a symbol of hate when they saw it.

awol2009

Oh dear God! Why hasn't anyone called for Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson to come in and lead a protest or start a riot? The dumbing-down of America is alive and well when we have University leaders kow-towing to every whim of paranoia that can be dreamed up or imagined by the far-left elitist regimes. Grow some balls here, Joe Gow. MLK himself would be doing a major facepalm on this.

Overthehillhappy

College students are ''afraid'' of a flag? No doubt they are also ''afraid'' of BEDSHEETS as well, so, refuse to use any? Really? That a COLLEGE student is ''afraid'' of a flag is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard! Do they have their ''Mommies'' staying with them to ''protect'' them from the ''boogie man'' too? If not, perhaps they should have when they have no problem going out at night, getting falling down drunk and picking up anyone or anything at the bar and going home with them.

union conservative

This a direct result of our educational system. From about middle school up through college our kids are being forced to absorb garbage like this. And the weak take it to extremes while the strong store it away and use it to get good grades and then get rid of it cause later they find out what this garbage really is. If teachers and professors would get back to real education our kids would be more successful; they would want to get jobs, they would be able to balance a check book and own things. This article speaks volumes on where some kids are headed in life.

Army Vet

I have actually enjoyed reading these blog entries. We are having a spirited discussion about the First Amendment. I think it's great. We have all become so cynical about our government. But it is our government. It's just encouraging to see that all of us care enough to still weigh in on these matters. The Founders really knew what they were doing and we still have this gift called the Constitution. I am the son of immigrants and I love this country. Our opinions may differ, but we are all getting involved in a healthy debate about the First Amendment. The fact that we continue to engage on these issues actually shows the strength of what it means to be an American.

Snow Cougar Mary Burke

Excellent comment.

I am extremely offended by the rainbow flag and what it represents. I wonder what their response would have been if there were complaints that their was a rainbow flag on the semi's grill instead of a battle flag? Even though the rainbow flag offends me, I would support their rights to display it.

spaceis411

scmb--

because the clue-phone is ringing, but you haven't answered it.

indeed, we have the right to display any flag. but try and have an awareness of its meaning. this would be useful.

Liberty Peak

Thomas Paine, Is that how you solve your problems ?, boy you need some professional help.
You're no better than any Hate group that flies it.
The place you will end up in for tearing my flag down, is under lock and key, where you'll be under surveillance . LONG LIVE DIXIE GO PACK GO

SpiritofThomasPaine

I wouldn't have complained. I would have done what I always do when I see a confederate flag....I would have torn it down, or scratched it off, and thrown it in the trash. Problem solved. Anyone supporting a flag from a vanquished enemy of the State should be kept under gov't surveillance.

ISIS is an abhorrent terror group but they and their flag have not killed the hundred thousand plus Americans like those who marched behind the defeated confederate flag.

This is a no brainer. Next

dopey

Does that include native american symbols to?

jimmyabbz

ignorant comment

teamamerica

The flags of ISIS...now there is a reason for fear and angst!

UW-Nowhere

Wow... all of this because some redneck had a confederate flag on his truck. I don't agree with the cuts the university has had to absorb, but if they put in all this time and energy because someone got their feelings hurt about a flag, it doesn't exactly make the case for needing more resources.

CJ

I bet this officer's family wished all they had to worry about was a flag on a semi......

http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-downey-police-officer-killed-20151119-story.html

SpiritofThomasPaine

Cops dying on duty is horrific. It has nothing to do with this discussion at all and kinda is par for the course for the conservative unable to debate issues one at a time.

By the way, this year is set to be the safest for police officers on duty with a death total the lowest in 30+ years. But that doesn't matter to the narrow partisan mind.

That flag of a former enemy of the state should have been ripped off the semi truck and burned after it was first defecated on.

CJ

A lot of this whining and crying about a flag is pathetic people in life have real issues as I noted in the article.

Icarus

WOW! What a bunch of wusses! America is in trouble if it's future depends on these crybullies that can't function due to hurt feelings caused by a truck decoration. What are they going to do when faced with a real problem or danger? Probably have a cry in. Sad. Sad. Sad.

Liberty Peak

Not all of my responses were made for you, so get over yourself . In Lincoln's Inaugural address he expressly disavowed the intention of interfering with slavery in the States where it existed,( which means Northern States too). And declared that the Fugitive Slave Law, and all other constitutional laws, should be enforced. Northern slave holding States didn't outlaw slavery until after the war in 1865. Sherman and Grant didn't free their slaves until 1865. R. E. Lee freed his inherited slaves in 1862. Can we agree on this, GO PACK GO

tower

I looked up what you stated. The National Park Service said his wife actually owned the slaves on her MO plantation of her father's. Grant did own one slave who he freed in 1859. Since the husband of that day owned everything in the marriage it would be correct to say he owned slaves during the war. There are rumors on the web about Sherman also owning two slaves for a short time but the historians I read dispute this. I was surprised, thanks for showing this to me.

Mac

The reason he said those things was that it was the hot button issue of the time. He ran for president on the ticket of the newly-founded Republican Party whose goal was for a gradual elimination of slavery. South Carolina seceded from the Union shortly after his election to the presidency stating that the federal government was now "infected" with anti-slavery sentiments. The country was divided with the northern states being non-slaveholding states and the southern states being slaveholding states. "Northern States" did not hold slaves, however the wartime Union (the "North" if you will), included several border states that did not secede from the Union. Lincoln could not legally free the slaves in the Union as he was legally bound by the U.S. Consitution which seemingly legalized slavery in its Fugitive Slave Acts and other mentions of slavery. Slavery could only be abolished in the Union by an amendment to the U.S. Consitution which happened shortly after the war ended.

jimmyabbz

slavery began and continued in the north

Mac

Huh?

CJ

With all the comments one would have thought this was an article on guns and the 2nd Amendment.......sad state of affairs how soft and delicate some are today. Wait until some of these students have real life issues be it health, job loss, divorces you name it. Will they still be running to someone for help or look in the mirror at who they should be relying on?

Buggs Raplin

OK..some students at UW-L were 'offended' by the Confederate flag on a piece of industrial machinery on their campus, and they complained about it. UW-L should have told the complainers it is the right of all Americans to display symbols/flags/banners that might offend. UW-L did not do that. It prostrated their institution to political correctness. It did the WRONG thing; it did a terrible thing. Just terrible. What kind of message is that to students? Joe Gow ought to issue an apology, and reprimand the administrator involved. This is NOT how things should operate in the US. We must..MUST..put an end to political correctness; it is a cancer on the minds of way too many college students, and their adult liberal supporters. We must get rid of political correctness.

LaCrosseTaxPayer

This country is based on freedom, and that means freedom for everyone -- not just you! You may leave the room, turn the channel, express a different opinion, make a different choice etc.; but the world is full of idiots, and probably always will be.
You do not have the right to be free from harm!
YOU DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO STOMP ON OTHER PEOPLE RIGHT!!!!
If you don’t like my tattoos, don’t look at them!
If you don’t like my hair, don’t look at it!
If you don’t like the way I talk, don’t lesson to me!
If you don’t like my clothing, don’t look at me!
If you don’t like the music I lesson to, don’t lesson to it!
If you don’t like something, go someplace that what offends you don’t existence don’t stomp on my rights!
"We the sensible people of the United States, in an attempt to help everyone get along, restore some semblance of justice, avoid more riots, keep our nation safe, promote positive behavior, and secure the blessings of debt free liberty to ourselves and our great-great-great-grandchildren, hereby try one more time to ordain and establish some common sense guidelines....

We hold these truths to be self evident: that a whole lot of people are so confused by the Bill of Rights that they require a Bill of NON-Rights."

ARTICLE I: You do not have the right to a new car, big screen TV, or any other form of wealth. More power to you if you can legally acquire them, but no one is guaranteeing anything.

ARTICLE II: You do not have the right to never be offended. This country is based on freedom, and that means freedom for everyone -- not just you! You may leave the room, turn the channel, express a different opinion, etc.; but the world is full of idiots, and probably always will be.

ARTICLE III: You do not have the right to be free from harm. If you stick a screwdriver in your eye, learn to be more careful, do not expect the tool manufacturer to make you and all your relatives independently wealthy.

ARTICLE IV: You do not have the right to free food and housing. Americans are the most charitable people to be found, and will gladly help anyone in need, but we are quickly growing weary of subsidizing generation after generation of professional couch potatoes who achieve nothing more than the creation of another generation of professional couch potatoes.

ARTICLE V: You do not have the right to free health care. That would be nice, but from the looks of public housing, we're just not interested in public health care.

ARTICLE VI: You do not have the right to physically harm other people. If you kidnap, rape, intentionally maim, or kill someone, don't be surprised if the rest of us want to see you fry in the electric chair.

ARTICLE VII: You do not have the right to the possessions of others. If you rob, cheat, or coerce away the goods or services of other citizens, don't be surprised if the rest of us get together and lock you away in a place where you still won't have the right to a big screen color TV or a life of leisure.

ARTICLE VIII: You do not have the right to a job. All of us sure want you to have a job, and will gladly help you along in hard times, but we expect you to take advantage of the opportunities of education and vocational training laid before you to make yourself useful.

ARTICLE IX: You do not have the right to happiness. Being an American means that you have the right to PURSUE happiness, which by the way, is a lot easier if you are unencumbered by an over abundance of idiotic laws created by those of you who were confused by the Bill of Rights.

ARTICLE X: This is an English speaking country. We don't care where you are from, English is our language. Learn it or go back to wherever you came from! (lastly....) NOW..

ARTICLE XI: You do not have the right to change our country's history or heritage. This country was founded on the belief in one true God. And yet, you are given the freedom to believe in any religion, any faith, or no faith at all; with no fear of persecution. The phrase IN GOD WE TRUST is part of our heritage and history, and if you are uncomfortable with it, TOUGH!!!!

tower

Wow! And plagiarism so rampant.

pugs2

Thank you for speaking the truth.

spaceis411

actually, "in god we trust" (i don't) is a relatively new addition. not very historical. such slogans were added in the fight against the "godless" communists, mainly in the latter half of the 20th century.

sorry to bust your bubble.

redalert

tell the construction company to remove it - UW-L is essentially their boss-- the end. An employee doesn't have the rights to say or do anything he/she wants without being fired. Tell the construction company that UWL doesn't tolerate symbols of hatred/racism and wouldn't tolerate an ISIS/Nazi/KKK symbol on their campus, and neither would many Southern states. Wake up,rednecks (and no, this isn't a proud term -- it doesn't mean outdoorsman/farmer/ it means hillbilly racist)

dopey

Is it ok if a student wore a "black lives matter" shirt, or displayed a banner on campus?

Would you feel as comfortable saying the N word on a public forum as you are the word "redneck"? Redneck and hillbilly are both racist terms used to describe economically disadvantaged whites.

Seems that liberals have a funny interpretation of freedom and inclusivity.

tower

Hey dopey, its all about Freedom of Speech.

dopey

Do you think Kid Rock is a "hillbilly racist"?

CJ

My way or the highway there huh Red? I sure hope you don't have kids......

jimmyabbz

dumb comment

Daisy21

What is up with these perpetually offended kids?

Mohisican

Correction Tower, I don't think that you think at all. Have you seen your reflection yet? Go back to sucking from the society you despise, l think they are called leaches. By the way you offend me! Wah Wah Wah you hurt my widdle feelwings.

tower

What is a leach? And you want to talk about thinking?

The Veteran

towe rthe LIAR We all know he meant LEECH, I think that describes you perfectly!!!!!

tower

I only enjoy sucking from your income Faux Vet. I know what he meant but you would think some clown who wants to insult you would get it right.

redalert

sounds like everyone wants free speech as long as it isn't offensive to the majority. a college campus is ideally a place where a variety o f races and cultures can enjoy an education. The confederate flag symbolizes segregation and hatred, and even South Carolina has realized it so wake up rednecks, the flag is a symbol of hatred, and was never the slave owning-South's official flag in the first place.

Buggs Raplin

The Confederate flag does not embody segregation and hatred, though the Black Lives Matter crybullies at Mizzou do.

tcieslewicz

I call bs. buggs.

tower

According to a guy who thinks the world is populated by Annukians.

Liberty Peak

Your analogy of your relatives fighting for Hitler to take over Europe, to the Confederacy wanting to break away from the Union, because Lincoln didn't want the newly opened western territories to have slaves, but didn't care about existing states having slaves.
A person showing their Southern Pride and Heritage with a flag doesn't mean that they are uneducated, or racist. Making the guy take down his flag really shows who the intolerant bigots are. When I was 16, I wanted to be in DIXIE.... gigity gigity

tower

My analogy is what? You didn't finish that thought. Lincoln was a segregationist. He also saw the political truth of the age. However, the Emancipation degree did free slaves in liberated sections of the South and later was used to free slaves throughout the South.
You are wrong in that you say he didn't care about existing states, he did. He was just facing reality of war. I do think you need to back the train up here, I never said anyone showing their Southern Pride, whatever that is, was uneducated or racist. I just think
they are deluded.

YGBK

> "the Emancipation degree did free slaves in liberated sections of the South and later was used to free slaves throughout the South."

That's the thing. The Emancipation only freed slaves in the South not the North. With his proclamation he said the slaves in the South were free but refused to free the slaves in the North. It's amazing how many people this is lost on...

http://www.history.com/news/5-things-you-may-not-know-about-lincoln-slavery-and-emancipation

Mac

It's amazing how often things are taken out of context. Congress passed the Confiscation Acts which allow Union forces to seize enemy property, the sole intent of which was to free slaves in enemy territory. Based on these acts and spurred on by the abolitionist movement, Lincoln took wartime liberties to emancipate all slaves in the secessionist states, but had no legal authority to do so within the Union. He was bound by the U.S. Constitution which seemingly legalized slavery in its Fugitive Slave Acts and other mentions of slavery. It took an amendment to the Constitution to free the slaves within the southern, slaveholding border states that didn't secede from the Union. Folks like to say that "Northern states had slaves too", but actually these were slaves in southern slaveholding states that remained part of the wartime Union, "The North" if you will, because they never declared secession.

crank

In the group hug and cuddling session which followed the cry-in at Mizzou, I commented there is/was nothing the university admin could say or do that would be enough to quiet the sobs of the aggrieved students who have had their feelings hurt. Let's all just have a good long cry, shall we?

WE CAAAAAAAN'T! THERE ARE NO POST-CONSUMER RECYCLED TISSUES IN OUR SAFE SPACE!

In this case, students complained about the confederate flag on a truck. The administration had the trucker remove it. THEN... another student is riled up that the trucker was asked to remove it and that his First Amendment rights were violated.

I'm waiting for the various UWL athletic teams to cancel their schedules in protest and demand Gow resign for not doing enough or doing too much.

teddyj

We got better things to do then stop a construction worker on taxpayers dime from working to remove a stupid flag. The best solution would have been to tell him after his shift to not show up tomorrow if the flag was still on his truck. Personally I'm not offended by it but I just assume the guy waiving it is always named Cooter and he's an imbecile.

Buggs Raplin

What a liar you are. You're not offended, but you denigrate the trucker for his right to display the flag as a cooter and imbecile. You are a liar.

awol2009

To make such an issue of this over a darn flag on a truck shows we have a much bigger problem. If the dam thing was flying from a flag pole on campus, yes, that might be problematic. But this? My God, what have institutions of higher learning come to? Whoever made this an issue needs to come out of their Mamby-Pamby Land and get real with life and the world. So, if they saw this same flag on a truck or car while traveling, are they going to call the "Political Correctness Police" to have it chased-down and removed? I really don't care for the flag but it represents different things to different people; this campus "outrage" is unflippingbelievable. Watch out world, we're in big trouble.

dopey

Good point awol. The Gov will need to force private businesses to provide "safe places" in case liberals come across any confederate flags or other offensive images.

tower

First place I can think of dopey are the flower shops and bakeries that have to cater to gay clients.

dopey

Especially the ones owned by muslims.

you think you know

Muslims just won a lawsuit in federal court that due to their religion they could not be fired or punished for refusing to transport alcohol.

Why is it the exact opposite, that a Christain can be sued/fired/punished for refusing to serve homosexuals?

tcieslewicz

A lot of hate in this string.

awol2009

Tcieslewicz- Hate? What hate? It's a flag on a semi-truck. What's the problem? Hyperbole on American universities is all it is. How are all these butt-hurt babies going to survive in the real world when they leave the soft and cuddly concubine of UW-L? There are a lot of offensive things in this world; they'd better accustomed themselves to it and move on. This is just a ridiculous example of how coddled and whimpy some people are. They need to grow a backbone and gain some intestinal fortitude if this silly semi-truck grill protector that happens to have a Confederate flag screen-printed upon it invoked "fear". Tolerance is a two-way street and there's a fine line in the middle. Who crossed it here?

k

I soooo agree.lots of angry people trying to defend their thoughts.

awol2009

The entire "issue" that has been made of this is almost comical. This is so trivial. If a flag on a semi grill invokes such "fear", we're in big trouble. Sorry, but I witnessed the REAL hate of racism in the 60's and 70's. This local issue is nothing compared to what transpired then. I believe in equality for all and am not racist. This "sky is falling" Chicken Little mantra mentality is getting ridiculous. What kind of weaklings cry Wolfe over such a trivial semi-truck grill cover that has a darn Confederate flag? WTH? Did they think the stupid KKK was on campus, ready to lynch them? Such paranoia. Geese man, just move along, nothing to hyperventilate over here.

pugs2

I agree with you awol, it is almost comical. In fact the more I read I was laughing, Some are so childish in their comments. And a lot of hate, after the truck driver had been done, he would have been gone. Problem solved. Such a ruckus over nothing. There are bigger problems than that trucks flag going on, that need to be taken care of. Just sayin.

LooneyLeft

If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea offensive or disagreeable.I hear the bell now, get along kiddies its class time

tower

See Looney, we can agree. In this case the U nicely asked the trucker to remove it and he nicely agreed to it. What's the problem?

dopey

The problem is that he was asked to remove it.

Bill Payer

Tower - How do you know the U asked "nicely"? Was the driver confronted by campus police or were there implied threats by U officials when the driver was asked to take it down? We don't know.

tower

Well Bill because the article the other day in the Trib said so. So we do know that. The Dean said she sent another employee to ask the driver to take it down and he agreed. All done civilly and with no problem. If you have different information than put it out there.

Buggs Raplin

Question: How does a liberal like Cassandra define a person with an open mind? Answer: Anyone who agrees with her.

Cassandra

#townjoke

new2Lax

Stomping and burning the flag, where is the outrage. Can you even imagine these kiddies defending your country. My god, these kids must have ate their parents.

Old Bowhunter

To the editor:

How can you have this awful picture in your paper?!? I'm so scared and offended I had to turn off my computer!

Liberty Peak

OZ, what you are talking about is two different issues and cannot be combined, there is no connection between a Confederate flag, a Nazi flag, or an ISIS flag. The Nazis were and the ISIS are invading and taking over other countries. With all the different Confederate flags only a few get a bad rap. But the American flag that was flying before and after the Civil War gets a free pass. Even though a few more stars and stripes were added, you cannot forget the slave trade, Indian murdering past that the flag represents. And no, there shouldn't be any other Nation's flag flown here,(except at consulate's) the Confederate flag is part of this nation whether you like it or not. LONG LIVE DIXIE

tower

You are slightly wrong, the CSA invaded the North when they went to PA. They also sent terrorist agents into NYC and other Northern cities to set bombs and fires. You said you had ancestry who fought for the South. So what? I had ancestry who fought for the Germans in WWII. One was killed on the Eastern Front. Does that give me the right to fly a Nazi flag to "honor" my ancestors? Ya, I could but I don't see the need to honor my heritage in a country that was an enemy of mine.

Buggs Raplin

You have the right to fly the Nazi flag if you want to. Our Constitution gives you that right. Wake up, doofus, and consider the questions you ask before asking them.

tower

Yes you can NBR and you can accept all the just criticism you will get.

crank

Yes, you have the right.

We've seen your anti-Semitic comments here from time to time. It's clear you still hate Jews and oppose Israel. Now we know why. It's in your blood, you little fascist. While you probably own a Nazi flag, I expect you keep it tucked away where nobody can see it on a wall in your basement.

tower

You know crank that you and I don't like each other much. That is ok. And I know you wrote the above because you thought it would get under my skin, It didn't, but it did disappoint me, not surprised mind you, that you thought it necessary to invoke the terrible crimes and horrors inflicted on millions of men, women and children to try and score some cheap political point. For that you have earned the Supreme POSS of the Day Award. Something you have honestly earned. You owe the memories of these people an apology but I doubt you will have the class to offer it.

crank

You constantly take up a position where you oppose Jews and their right to live in peace. You have openly supported Iran's right for nuclear arms and accused Israel of being the aggressor in struggles with their neighbors. You openly criticize politicians who side with Israel against hostile neighbors.

Now I understand it. It's in your blood. If anyone owes the memories of innocents an apology, it is you for your ancestors.

You once accused my ancestors of owning slaves and me of being in the Klan even though my ancestors were indentured (slaves) and fought for the north in the civil war. Invoking THOSE crimes and horrors was OK with you, I guess. No apology offered.

Save your fake outrage. We know you too well. Interestingly, you voiced no outrage when Cassandra, for cheap political points today, commented, "When will the republicans start advocating for the building of ovens as a method of getting rid of all the people they don't like?" Not a peep of outrage from you, hypocrite.

Cassandra

Cheap political points? It's a legitimate question. The leading candidate for the republicans is advocating shuttering houses of worship, creating a national database and ordering that all Muslims wear some type of badge. The notion of a "final solution" doesn't seem so far behind.
And the adherents of the party say nary a word in objection. That speaks volumes about exactly what the party stands for.

girl66

Get over it. People are free in this country right? If you are offended by this flag......don't look at it. You so obviously need to get a life. There isn't anything better for you to do with your time then cause a ruckus because of one of our countries historic flags? Please. And this is in the Tribune..........typical liberal fodder.

dopey

Cassandra...does that logic apply to native Americans as well?

Cassandra

Native Americans who have sovereign nations here?

dopey

Sovereign nations? Like as in not citizens of the USA?

Cassandra

The Confederacy LOST the war. They don't get to celebrate their "culture" or fly their flag any more than the Nazis or the Japanese get to fly their battle flags.

you think you know

The Japanese still flies does it not? In out nations capital even.

Kronosaurus

Japan is still a country. The Confederacy no longer exists.

you think you know

So? That wasn't Cassandra said, was it?

Cassandra

A rising sun flag is the military flag and ensign used primarily by the military forces of Imperial Japan. It was the war flag of the Imperial Japanese Army from 1870 to 1945.
You're thinking of a different flag.

Mohisican

Suggestion: IAmThe Wolf should rename himself as IAmTheSheep because when we become the restrictive society that you envision you will have to make a choice. Will you be a Storm Trooper and help enforce the oppression or the victim who suffers because of it.

Mohisican

Tower, how ironic. You can hate the flag, free speech, tolerance, and those who don't drink your koolaid, but you set yourself above such base emotions because anyone who disagrees with you is a "hater." How childish. I thought only vampires couldn't see themselves in the mirror.

tower

I think both sides are childish. The kids for being afraid to see something they don't like and the mouthbreathing pants wetters on here who think they have to defend something.
Try reading the tone of the morons who go on and on about the students etc. What venom over nothing. You are one of the hyperbole fuming people to state I hate the flag,etc.. It is an object, period. Do you hate your car because it shows something you don't like? To me the same thing. So if that sets me above base emotions, so be it. I have said before that just because you can say something doesn't mean you should. So stop the BS and assuming you know what I think, you don't.

The Veteran

tower the LIAR This is hilarious you complaining about someone assuming what you think YOU DO IT ALL THE TIME!!!

tower

Only with you, cupcake, only with you. Since you are such a genius tell me where I said any of the things he wrote? I didn't speak against the flag, free speech,or tolerance. However, your speech in the past has be intolerant and only for the free speech you like. BTW: how is the practice in playing tunes out your butt?

dopey

The Civil war ended 150 years ago, why did it take so long for liberals to realize they were offended by the flag? Ms Knudson and the rest of the tax payer funded professional cry babies are creating a generation of whiners.

I am curious if Mr Bell and Mr Dries are offended by today's Rap artists whose lyrics glorify violence, drug use and are degrading to women? I also wonder if Ms Knudson has taken any actions to remove any t shirts, posters promoting those artists?

Comparing the ISIS flag to the Confederate flag? Give me a break.

tower

I have said the same thing about people who want to wave a flag of a dead country.

lutefisk

fear and angst?
wow...this is embarrassing.

Graywolf

I object to any display of flags fron Japan, Germany, or Korea since they all tried to kill my dad and uncles.
Same thing.!

oz

To all the trolls who are defending the display of the Confederate flag:

Would you still defend it if it were the Nazi flag?
Or the ISIS flag?

Or is your support for the first amendment highly selective?

you think you know

Yes, I would defend any other flag. I don't like the confederate flag, just like I don't like a nazi flag or an isis flag. But, we have the constitution for a reason, and I choose to support it.

tower

YTYK, I would love to see you defend an ISIS flag. I wouldn't even go that far.

you think you know

Then go carry an isis flag on campus and i'll be right here to back up your rights to do so. Why are you and others willing to pick and choose what parts of the constiution to uphold simply because somebody got their feelings hurt?

tower

YTYK, you are the one who said you would defend flying the ISIS flag. I said even I wouldn't do that. So you take the lead big guy. Bet you don't make the clock tower. And which part of the Constitution was violated? The U asked the guy to remove the flag and he said ok. No big deal. You guys are the people who are making this a big Constitutional issue. I think both sides are childish.

you think you know

I said I would defend the display of any other flag, I never said I would carry it myself. I also would never carry the confederate flag around myself, or a rainbow flag, or a Minnesota flag, or an I love Lucy flag....doesn't mean I wouldn't defend another persons rights to do so.

tower

And again, YTYK, I doubt you would defend an ISIS flag.

Buggs Raplin

The Confederate flag is not in the same category as your two examples, but, yes, if a person wants to wave a Nazi flag or an ISIS flag, they have the right to do so.

k

Oh that would be really well accepted now wouldnt it?HA

Condor Kid

Adref: He was on the campaign trail too or did you already forget about that debacle?

random annoying bozo

can you say 'liberal, and politically correct fascism'?

under fascism, free speech and expression are usually first things to disappear.

Buggs Raplin

Too bad George Carlin isn't alive to deliver a blistering monologue on our fragile college students, so offended by just about everything. But on the bright side, psychiatry professionals are going to have a booming business when these delicate 'flowers' enter the real world, and are unable to cope with it.

tower

Wetting their pants? Seems the haters are present on here today. What's the beef here? The U politely asked the guy to remove it & he politely agreed. If you don't like that, tough.

Only1Green

I'd be willing to bet that whoever complained about this, purposely went looking for the truck, after the initial sighting, again and again until the driver had taken the flag off. Probably still does.

yourewrong

The pussification of America continues in today's colleges. Just because 1 person is offended by something, they think they deserve every right to be accommodated at the inconvenience of others. College kids think everything needs to be handed to them, and they are taught no different in situations like this, and in the case at the University of Missouri.

adrefs

Agreed!!!

Mohisican

This is the most stupid thing I have ever read. I bet the little liberals were peeing themselves over who could call and complain first. Grow up! If you want to get upset about something how about the 100s of Black and Black murders. How about joining the military and defending this country you want to tear down. Ah, but playing the victim while the rest of us pay the tab is much easier. You bunch of whiners. That is last dime that Univ. gets from me. Paula Knudson you need to get a real job and not as a paid crybaby.

adrefs

Knutson needs to be fired NOW! She's offended some of her students! One would think in the liberal world that that would be enough to be tarred and feathered!

sallyjo

They couldn't handle the military. (that's why they are in college.) Drill Sargent would have a blast with their pansy a@@e@

new2Lax

It's time for the diaper changing rooms on our campuses be removed, these students need to be potty trained. To answer the women and children refugee issue. Both women and children were used in Vietnam to use explosives and suicide bombings. Quite common with terrorists as well. So far the majority of refugee's seem to be single males between the ages of 15 to 40. It makes you wonder why they wouldn't be the most vulnerable in their society, women, children and the older population.

adrefs

This situation is completely and utterly senseless. IF in fact students felt "fear and angst" over the sight of a Confederate flag then they need counseling. More importantly though Ms. Knudson needs to be FIRED immediately. She abused the power of her position to create this entire debacle and then continued the abuse by then doing all she could to squelch the First Amendment rights of her students! The truck driver has every right to have that flag on his truck and the students had every right to rally on behalf of FREE SPEECH! Someone needs to launch a campaign to raise funds for the students to sue her into oblivion for stomping on their free speech! Yes you little spineless libs, free speech exists even on college campuses, especially those funded by our tax dollars!

dopey

Hopefully UWL has cleansed the campus of other hateful and frightening symbols such as Che Guevara images and the Palestinian flag.

Given the treatment of gays and women, should any Islamic symbols be allowed on campus?

adrefs

Couldn't we just put up some "No Hate" signs next to the "Gun Free Zone" signs? That oughta do it!

Liberty Peak

It is not the Stars & Bars, it's the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia.
In it's rectangle shape, it's the second confederate Navy Jack.
The Stars & Bars was the first National Flag of the Confederacy.
People fly the flag because of southern heritage and pride. The pride is from knowing that their ancestors (mine too) fought against all odds,and against a larger force.
An overwhelming majority of the southern troops had no slaves, they were asked to fight of their respective State and they did. If you see hate and bigotry in that flag, you should also see it in the American flag. It was flying before and after the Civil War during all those years of killing innocent Indians, because they didn't want to be kicked off their land.
Seeing a Confederate flag should be like seeing deer in a field, something you've seen before and it's no big deal. People find hate where they want too. LONG LIVE DIXIE

adrefs

Liberty, c'mon! You should know by now that facts and reality are not things that the liberal mind can even comprehend! And it's also readily apparent that college campuses are now "NO Free Speech" zones lest the children soil themselves....

tower

As I said yesterday to you. Some heritages need to be put in the dustbin of history. And what heritage are you speaking of? The ability to own another person? BS. These people were traitors to the Constitution many of them swore to defend and protect. Most of the upper level people in the CSA were former US Army officers. What heritage is that? Flags mean something. The Stars and Stripes haven't always lived up to the standards we like to envision but for the most part it has or has corrected itself to be better. I asked you yesterday which Union generals owned slaves as you claim. Face it, the South lost, get over it.

wakeup

Agree that U has free speech issues. What if someone parked on campus has racist bumper stickers? Will they have to remove them? This should be an opportunity to teach not just about white power advocates, but also about class issues and issues of apprpriate workplace attire for your vehicle. Does the driver's employer agree with his display of hate and ognorance at work? Many would not. The driver should have been a guest speaker at a forum so he could explain why he would have something like this on his truck. We know why, but college students need to understand the toxic America they're living in and certain truck drivers need to understand the "good ol' days" are not coming back so get over it.

adrefs

And you could use a lesson in spelling and grammar, not to mention the 1st Amendment! And "workplace attire for your vehicle"?! Oh please!

Bill Payer

Ms. Knudson does not need to tell these young adults what they should and should not be offended by. She over reacted.

I'm sure you can find just as many college students offended by the rainbow flag as those offended by the Confederate flag. Do you think Ms. Knudson would've lifted a finger in that case and had the flag taken down?

LesTrafik

Might as well have a swastika on the grill. There is little difference between the two in what they represent.

Public humiliation will get the best of this driver when he actually ‘learns’ what the flag stands for because I really doubt he knows.

DMoney

You clearly don't know history. There's literally almost nothing similar between two other than slavery. As bad as it was, that's only one thing of a million things that make up a country.

Wis_Taxpayer

One has to wonder, why isn't the Tib covering the events in France?

Deadwood subscriber

If I want news about UWL, I go to the Trib. If I want news about France, I go anywhere else.

Machiavelli

“On Friday, I saw firsthand the genuine fear of some of our students. Many of us are privileged to have not experienced fear of this kind, so it may be harder to understand.” Paula Knudson

So the UW of L hires KKKonfederate KKKonstruction KKKompany out of Alabama beKKKause they worKKK cheap. Why are you being so sensitive? [SarKKKasm alert]

"WW2: The Waffen SS"

www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKzi6nlMckI

lookout

I would think a flag that's the symbolism of the KKK would cause some problems where ever it goes. Some would say that flag is a symbol of southern pride. That could be true in some cases but it's still a KKK flag.

adrefs

No it's not. The KKK flag is a donkey (it's on Hilary's campaign bus if you need a reference).

girl66

I wish there were 'like' buttons out here.

you think you know

The 'Don't Tread on Me' flag is a symbol of the tea party now. But was originally used during the revolutionary war when fighting for our national freedom.

Does that mean since it now is used by people who you don't agree with, that it's historical value should be abandoned?

lookout

I just pointed out a fact I didn't say it was right or wrong.

Wis_Taxpayer

The terrorists want us scared, they want to use fear as a weapon, they what us to demean and persecute people for their religion.

Well, it sure looks like it's working on the Republicans in our Country. Also in Wisconsin where our Governor that "Won't be intimidated" is now fear mongering FOR the terrorists!

Where are these same Republicans that in 2001 said if we question the President we are siding with the terrorists.

Republicans in 2001 also called any descent to Bush's policies or his administration traders!

Looks like the terrorists have done a real good job of scaring Republicans... now they are afraid of widows and children!

Even worse, they have the Republican party as a whole fear mongering for them, promoting the hate and fear they want to inflect on us and ours that live in a free society.

Republicans should be ashamed of themselves.... of course they are not, instead they step up their fear mongering.... why? because they have the delusion that keeping Americans afraid will give them political victory! How sick is that.

you think you know

Turns out the majority of the country according to polls are for slowing the process of bringing the Syrian refugees here. There are many democrat members of congress also of the same ideology.

Your divide and conquer approach and hatred toward anyone who doesn't share your personal opinion isn't helping solve any problems.

adrefs

And just what exactly does your nonsensical rant have to do with free speech rights at UWL? Also, the Republicans are not fear mongering; it's a known fact that ISIS rebels have infiltrated the "refugees", 72% of whom are military aged men. Every day more of them are being caught and until the Obama administration can figure out a way to properly cross check these people why is it wrong to err on the side of caution? They allowed thousands to flood our southern border last year without any vetting whatsoever and just let them run free, so their track record is pretty poor in this arena (as well as all the others I might add!).

you think you know

Oh, and your claim that widows are innocent comes from where?

One of the bombers in Paris yesterday who blew herself up could have been a widow. Since when if somebody loses their spouse are they not a threat? That is the most idiotic talking point ever used, not surprising it came from Obama.

Buggs Raplin

Future Tribune article: UW-L today announced it would no longer allow certain currency on campus as it has been deemed offensive and a threat to the safe space that UW-L has become. Gone are the $1 dollar bill featuring slave owner George Washington, and the $5 dollar bill featuring Abraham Lincoln, who believed blacks were inferior to whites

Condor Kid

While we defend freedoom of speech we are also free to speak-up about offensive displays like that flag. I was mystified that Walker never weighed in on the defeated rebel flag issue in South Carolina.

you think you know

http://host.madison.com/69259224-d512-5feb-aa7b-248cc15d30b8.html

Really?

He waited until Hailey made her decision, then he explained his opinion. Is waiting to hear from the person who runs SC inappropriate?

adrefs

Mystified? Why? Somebody took down a flag in South Carolina and we have to have a comment from the Governor of Wisconsin? Nice try misty.

sylvester

Ii would bet the drivers brain is poisined by fox and radio stations like 1410.

adrefs

FOX is far and away the ratings leader across ALL cable networks and has been so for almost 20 years! They routinely have bigger audiences than all the others COMBINED! Rush Limbaugh has 23 MILLION listeners EVERY DAY and has also been FAR and AWAY the leader on radio for years and years. Sad that facts and reality are deemed poisonous to the liberal mind. Oh well, truth hurts. And by the way, the only thing that the driver actually needed was that little thing we call the Constitution. You may not like his flag (and I'm sure he's just crushed at the thought of that), but he has every right to put it on his truck...or car....or house....or shirt. Deal with it!

k

I watch fox only to get a few laughs,bet half their viewership does the same thing.

ElPresidente

I think we found the new picture for UWL's recruitment brochures... Like the staged mixed race photos colleges always use. I'll bet the parents of the students are happy that their babies are being protected from possibly being offended by the real world. I would like to know what was said during the interaction between Paula, the supervisor and the trucker...

AF Retired

This flag thing has become so stupid it's embarrassing. Are you kidding me?

Mr Bluejeans

Yeah, what message was the driver trying to deliver by decorating his rig with the Stars and Bars? Maybe it would have been more appropriate for him to festoon it with that other message of peace and love the Nazi swastika, or perhaps the current winner among the smart set, the Black Standard as used by various Islamic jihadists - you know, ISIS and their friends. Now THAT would send a message, no? All for free speech to boot. HEY, its just a flag.

adrefs

Yo bluejeans, maybe you need to loosen your belt a bit and read the 1st Amendment. Like it or not that truck driver has every right to display whatever flag he'd like regardless if it sends you whimpering to your little healing space (complete with teddy bears no doubt). Time to toughen up a bit big boy.

adrefs

No KIDDING! "Mommy, I saw a nasty little flaggy waggy at college today and it made my tum-tum hurt real bad. So I went to my healing space and cuddled with the teddy bear you sent me. But don't worry mommy, as soon as I graduate I'll be a strong, self sufficient business leader" Yeah right!

girl66

hahahahahahaha yeah right!!!! hahahahahaha

Utah DivisionSCV

Why College age students and adults would feel "Fear and Angst" over a grille cover of the Confederate Battle Flag is beyond me and a ridiculous display of hyper sensitivity. The driver willingly complied so that he could keep his job, who is kidding who here... and the student who thought that display of the flag means that the person displaying it "doesn't like people who look like me" is very misinformed and lacks historical reference and knowledge. The liberal left has done it again...Universities are brainwashing our youth, and the media is working the masses. It wont be long before America as we know it will not be America anymore...but probably...wait for it... 'Murica

Utah DivisionSCV

Why College age students and adults would feel "Fear and Angst" over a grille cover of the Confederate Battle Flag is beyond me and a ridiculous display of hyper sensitivity. The driver willingly complied so that he could keep his job, who is kidding who here... and the student who thought that display of the flag means that the person displaying it "doesn't like people who look like me" is very misinformed and lacks historical reference and knowledge. The liberal left has done it again...Universities are brainwashing our youth, and the media is working the masses. It won't be long before America as we know it will not be America anymore...but probably...wait for it... 'Murica

Utah DivisionSCV

Why College age students and adults would feel "Fear and Angst" over a grille cover of the Confederate Battle Flag is beyond me and a ridiculous display of hyper sensitivity.

The driver willingly complied so that he could keep his job, who is kidding who here... and the student who thought that display of the flag means that the person displaying it "doesn't like people who look like me" s very misinformed and lacks historical reference and knowledge.

The liberal left has done it again...Universities are brainwashing our youth, and the media is
working the masses. It wont be long before America as we know it will not be America anymore...but probably...wait for it...

Murica

adrefs

AMEN!!!!!

IAmTheWolf

Name of the driver and name of the company the driver works for?

Muddy

What good will that do??

adrefs

Why? A truck driver doesn't have any free speech rights?

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