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Belmont displays flag, but student says it could be more visible

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Display of the American flag has become synonymous with patriotism, especially since the events of Sept. 11, 2001. Belmont University, however, does not have any sort of exterior display of the flag, leading to questions and criticisms from some students.

Courtney Coyle, a sophomore vocal performance major, even wrote a letter to President Fisher about the lack of an American flag at an American university. “I have talked to some of my friends about this, and I asked them if they knew where the one flag pole on campus is. Most of them responded by saying they didn’t know where it was…” he said.

“Belmont does display the flag. There is one on permanent display at the Curb Event Center”, said Jason Rogers, vice president for Administration and University Counsel. Rogers went on to say that there is a smaller flag on display next to this one. “It was a gift from an alum named Kevin Ueno, a lieutenant in the U.S. Army, who recently returned from a tour in Iraq,” Rogers continued.

This flag is being displayed to honor all of the service people in the military, but most especially to honor graduates of Belmont who have served or are currently serving. In addition to these two displays, there is a flag that is raised on the flag pole during soccer matches. It isn’t displayed permanently due to a lack of proper lighting, Rogers said. There are also ceremonial flags that come out during graduations and other university events.

“There has been no conscious decision not to display the flag. I think the decision was made to light it, display it and to give it a place of maximum visibility and the Curb Event Center is the logical place for that,” he said. He added that despite there being no flag on a flag pole, Belmont has displayed both the flag and its patriotism in other ways.

He made mention of pride in the ways the flag is displayed on campus, as well as the Fourth of July celebration that the university hosts. The presidential debates that are being hosted are also an excellent indicator of Belmont’s patriotism.

“That reflects our pride and our democracy, a desire to connect our community and our students and our employees with the presidential election. I think that in itself is a very important display of our patriotism.”

 

 

 

February 28, 2008

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