College Professor Uses Disguised American Flag as Doormat as 'Art Display'

“I find this extremely disrespectful and a kick in the gut as a veteran."

A professor at Broward College (BC) in Florida wanted to make a statement by using an American flag as a doormat, but apparently isn't brave enough to just do it. So he cut it in half and painted it white so people wouldn't realize what they were standing on. Marine Corps Veteran and Broward College student Jess Karcher posted about it on Facebook:

Campus Reform reports that the "artist" is Broward College Assistant Professor of Art Lisa Rockford. They report that Karcher made the BC President aware of the offensive installation as well, writing him a letter which said:

“I am sorry to have to write this letter to you, but I am a student at Broward College Central Campus and I am a disable [sic] Marine Corps Veteran,” Karcher wrote, adding that one of the artists at the exhibit displayed “an American Flag cut in half” that is “either bleached or painted white laying on the ground on the entrance to the exhibition.” He continued, “People are stepping on the flag as they enter most of whom don’t realize its an American flag. The artist had a camera set up taking pictures of people stepping on it as part of her art work,” Karcher continued. “I find this extremely disrespectful and kick in the gut as a veteran. I have lost many friends whose caskets were draped with that same flag.”

Karcher said that Rockford also asked people who realized it was a flag not to tell anyone else so that people would continue to step on it. A spokesperson for Broward College provided Campus Reform with the following statement:

"Broward College understands that the piece, currently on exhibit, is controversial. The provocative nature of the piece is protected by the artist’s [c]onsitutional rights, specifically the First Amendment right to the Freedom of Speech. The piece represents the opinions of the individual artist and they are not indicative of the values at Broward College, the Rosemary Duffy Larson Gallery, or the other artists featured in the exhibition.

Broward College supports the United States Constitution, the right to the Freedom of Speech, and the American Flag. The College has taken measures to ensure attendees of the exhibit know the art and opinions expressed are controversial and do not represent the institution’s values."

Nobody would argue that she has the right to create this offensive display, but how many of us think that they would allow a display that offends certain other groups? Patriotic Americans are fair game, especially in academia. 

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