A planned screening of the film American Sniper on the University of Maryland campus has been been canceled after outcry from Muslim students.
The school’s conservative group released this statement in response:
The University of Maryland Student Entertainment Events (SEE) decided to screen American Sniper on May 6 and 7, 2015. After meeting with concerned student organizations, SEE has decided to ‘postpone’ the movie.
If the University prevents a movie like this from being shown, it promotes intolerance and stifles dialogue and debate on the subject and goes directly against the atmosphere of diversity the University of Maryland purports to provide.
The Muslim Students Association at the University of Maryland started a petition requesting that the school pull the screening of American Sniper. In the petition, the group stated that the film “perpetuates the spread of Islamaphobia and is offensive to many Muslims around the world for good reason.”
Ironically enough, the group also requested that students “exercise their freedom of speech” by signing the petition to remove the film from campus. MSA seemingly got their wish this morning when the school decided to cancel the screening.
The University of Maryland is only one of several campuses that have faced student outcry for screening, or attempting to screen, the Oscar-winning film. Just recently, the Young Americans for Freedom chapter at the University of Michigan protested the school’s decision to cancel the campus screening. Their protests were successful as the school eventually decided to show the film as planned.
This piece has been updated.