The Columbia University Marching Band has decided to dissolve — after performing music for 116 years — claiming that it was founded with a culture of sexual misconduct and racism, among other things.
“The Band has unanimously and enthusiastically decided to dissolve. The Columbia University Marching Band will not continue to exist in any capacity and will no longer serve as a Columbia spirit group,” said the marching band in a statement posted to its Facebook account.
“With this decision, the current Band attempts to take responsibility both for harm directly caused by present Band members and for injuries which occurred at other times in the Band’s history,” the statement added.
The marching band added that it has also been recently subject to “anonymous postings and allegations of sexual misconduct, assault, theft, racism, and injury to individuals and the Columbia community as a whole.”
The band, which has been in conflict with the university for years, was stripped of its university funding in 2019 after it had failed to register itself as a recognized group at the school, according to a report by the Columbia Spectator.
“The marching band did not submit its paperwork for recognition and was subsequently financially cut off from the University and prohibited from performing or bringing instruments to any official athletic events,” reported the Columbia Spectator.
The band reacted to this decision by protesting via performing weekly field shows on Low Steps, and starting a GoFundMe, which raised over $25,000 in less than a week. After that, the marching band and the athletic department agreed that it would play at Homecoming.
Now, however, the band has decided to dissolve itself after “making controversial jokes, and disputing with both Columbia’s administration and the student body,” the report added.
The marching band (!!) at @Columbia was apparently “founded on the basis of racism, cultural oppression, misogyny, and sexual harassment.” This left the band no choice but to disband “unanimously and enthusiastically.” pic.twitter.com/P5FFFx5PtP
— Bari Weiss (@bariweiss) September 15, 2020
The move to end the marching band was made after members wrote a letter to its leadership, calling on the band to be dissolved in all capacities due to its traditions of misconduct allegedly being beyond reform.
“The Columbia University Marching Band apologizes for insult and injury victims have experienced as a result of actions perpetrated in its name,” reads the band’s statement. “The Band has maintained a club structure founded on the basis of racism, cultural oppression, misogyny, and sexual harassment.”
“While substantial efforts have been made in recent years toward undoing decades of wrongdoing, we as a Band feel ultimately that it is impossible to reform an organization so grounded in prejudiced culture and traditions,” the statement added.
The marching band went on to say that it hopes its “dissolution will provide relief to the present suffering of the Columbia community and time to heal from the decades of harm caused by this organization.”
Columbia University did not immediately respond to Breitbart News’ request for comment.