Flag Memorial in Academic Plaza

A flag for each victim of the 9/11 terror attacks was placed on the lawn of Academic Plaza on September 11, 2016.

Over the past week, there have been stories published containing a magnitude of sadness. There is confusion and anger that comes with the words we have read and the things we have seen.

In the days to come, Texas A&M and its students will yet again be forced to put the weight of a national issue on its shoulders. After witnessing the events in Charlottesville, VA it can be frightening to think of what might happen during the white lives matter prostest on Sept. 11. However, Aggies were made for times such as these.

When things are dark, people look to the words of the those who have done great things for guidance. As a student newspaper in the United States, The Battalion is partial to a few of those words from our Constitution.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

This passage is included as a reminder. A reminder of when you restrict the words of a hateful few, more restriction will follow. A reminder that you cannot pick and choose when people are allowed to speak freely.

It is also a reminder that those who speak will be held accountable for their words and actions. If those who speak go further and commit crimes, they will be presumed innocent until proved guilty and judged by a group of their peers.

These are not easy ideas, but they are beautiful ones. They are the ideas that have prompted us to be a country in which people will sacrifice their lives to defend. A country that people will uproot their lives to come to for a better future. A country of force and prosperity. 

J.R.R Tolkien, who lived through times darker than ours, once wrote about those who find themselves in difficult situations and wish they never lived to see them, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”

You too have the freedom to act.

As members of the free press, The Battalion will be on the front lines of this issue to inform its readership honestly and accurately. It is a heavy burden to write about issues most would rather pay no mind or attention, however we believe that an informed people is a better one.

If you are lead to protest, do so in peaceful assembly. If you are called to pursue happiness by going about your business and ignoring the event all together, do your best to put some goodness in the world in whatever way you see fit.

If you feel a calling to participate on Sept. 11, but do not know how, come by our newsroom. We will be there during this protest, acting as the fourth estate — an uninhibited press, informing our student body and readership abroad, showing the world what we can do as student journalists. 

This editorial is the opinion of the majority of The Battalion’s editorial board, and is the responsibility of the editor-in-chief.

(6) comments

Clinton91

This is disappointing. It's unfortunate that the Batt staff could not have written a more sophisticated editorial, one informed by a worldview that exceeds the boundaries of campus. The paper should take a stand against white nationalism. Period. Instead, you appear to chide anyone who might protest white nationalism. You almost threaten them: "more restrictions will follow." There is no confusion about hate. To hide behind a veil of objectivity, as journalists, is cowardice. I hoped for more guts from the Batt. But I also hoped the Batt's staff would be diverse. Editorials like yours explain why A&M will always be a great regional university, but it will never rise to the level of a great national university. Aggie, Class of '91.

Aggie91DavisGary

Is he a "white nationalist" or a nationalist who is white? There is a difference, and Aggies are nationalists, are we not? Do you wish a weak United States? If he was (choose another race), would there be any outrage. Just curious. For the record, I don't know this guy's views. But too many people are categorizing too many people as racist, sexist, etc. How about you quote his worst passage and let it stand for itself. I wouldn't to go to see him, and he has been de-platformed, but how about we make up our own mind about what hate is. If silencing ideas, no matter how bad, is how you get "great", I hope they stay regional. Ben Shapiro, Ann Coulter, I have heard a lot of their views and both of them have been accused of "hate" and similarly treated at other universities. So I believe there is some confusion about hate. Aggie, Class of '91 as well.

Aggie91DavisGary

Yeah I looked up some of his comments, okay he is a white supremacist who happens to be white. But if Margaret Sanger were alive today, would A&M allow her to speak?

jan11976

Disappointing? it's beyond that - disgusting. "Neo-Nassi's want to come hang out at our fair university, bringing mayhem and murder? Surrreee come on down we'll protect your right to 'frea speach' " You've got to be kidding me. Remember when yelling fire in a crowded theater was not protected? These people are bringing the fire, literally. You've already been warned what they will do and they gladly foment more of it - and you welcomed them with open arms. Stay classy! (p.s. The Commandant of the Corp best remember that uniformed servicemembers are _not_ allowed to express political opinions period while in uniform - that's the policy of our US Armed Forces, and it should be theirs too - reign in your Corps) - Class of '90

Aggie91DavisGary

Was going to point out your misspelling, but apparently Nassi is profanity? Wow, nice Batt! Neo-Nassi's hate jews and love Hitler, can you point me at either of those concepts in his writing? You may be right, just asking for some proof. Don't know if this guy is one, but doubt his intent is murder or he could/would be under investigation or arrest. And mayhem without a counter protest would be kinda hard. They are the fringe, you give them strength by pointing the spotlight of "their ideas are too dangerous". Yelling fire in a crowed theater is STILL NOT protected, you need to look up the term "literally", and the lack of fire was the problem with yelling fire. If there is fire, then yelling fire is accurate. Its tough to do a mixed metaphor with only one, but you seem to have done it.

cmo1agg

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble.....
..................reminder that you cannot pick and choose when people are allowed to speak freely."

We can disagree vehemently with what someone believes-and says.
As Americans we must recognize and defend someone's right to believe and say it. And as Aggies we should set a first class example to our nation.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.