Students at UC Davis have made it optional to display the American flag at student government meetings as a result of a bill that passed last week.
Senate Bill 76, which was proposed to amend bylaws that made it mandatory to display the American flag at student senate meetings, passed after a vote that took place last Thursday.
According to a report from The Sacramento Bee, student senators are now forced to petition to have the flag displayed 24 hours before each meeting.
The revised bylaws give senate members the option to petition for the display of the flag 24 hours before each meeting. The ASUCD senate pro tem ultimately has authority to decide whether the U.S. flag will be displayed, according to the revision.
Student Senator Jose Antonio Meneses introduced the resolution, suggesting that his bill was an attempt to act in accordance with a federal law that claims that no organization is mandated to display the flag.
The resolution says that since “the concept of United States of America and patriotism is different for every individual, it should not be compulsory that the flag is in view at all times during Senate meetings.”
“It wasn’t political in any way,” Meneses said. “But because it is the United States flag … it’s a touchy subject to talk about. We want to make sure we are not sued.”
Student Senator Michael Gofman opposed the bill. A first-generation American, Gofman wished that members of his student senate understood the realities of living in countries other than the United States.
“I have a much closer connection to places outside of America,” he said. “I understand what the alternative looks like. I don’t think members of the senate know what it is like to live in a totalitarian country.”
Tom Ciccotta is a libertarian who writes about economics and higher education for Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter @tciccotta or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org