USC Cancels Commencement Because of Protestors

( – The University of Southern California, or USC, has canceled its main commencement exercises this year, citing concerns that growing pro-Palestinian and anti-war protests in its campus could lead to disruptions and safety hazards should the ceremonies push through.

In a statement, university officials said that while the smaller, individual school commencement exercises would still be held, heightened security measures would be implemented. But for the main graduation ceremony, the school admitted that it would be difficult to manage the logistics needed to secure the expected roughly 65,000 people what typically attend the main USC commencement ceremonies given the current atmosphere on campus.

USC has currently closed its campus in light of recent pro-Palestinian protests that have gripped campuses all over the country, a trend that has left many concerned. The issue has even garnered the attention of lawmakers, a number of whom have called on President Joe Biden’s administration to take concrete steps to ensure campus safety, particularly for Jewish students, who are often targeted – at the very least – by harassment and antisemitic language.

A group of 27 Republicans in the Senate, headed by Republican Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, have sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, and U.S. Department of Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, calling for the restoration of order in universities all over the U.S. Many, like USC, have temporarily closed their campuses due to the protest actions. Schools such as New York-based Columbia University has seen the rise of a massive “occupy” style protest action, which has even seen students barricade buildings and defy police ordering protest dispersals.

In their letter, the GOP senators pointed out that the rioting in some protest actions was illegal, along with “violence or attempted violence against anyone because of their Jewish heritage.” They also called for the cancellation of government funding for schools that turn a blind eye to antisemitism and harassment of Jewish students.

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