PROF GIORDANO: Frat Bros to the Rescue: Young patriots take a stand to reclaim college campuses

Amidst the campus chaos, a group of young Americans stood up to defend the flag and exhibited a vital cardinal virtue that is often lacking nowadays – Courage.

Nicholas Giordano is a professor of Political Science, the host of The P.A.S. Report Podcast, and a fellow at Campus Reform’s Higher Education Fellowship. With 2 decades of teaching experience and over a decade of experience in the emergency management/homeland security arena, Professor Giordano is regularly called on to speak about issues related to government, politics, and international relations.

It is easy to become demoralized as we watch our college campuses get hijacked by a radical extremist movement that celebrates Hamas, calls for intifada, and chants of death to America and Israel. It seems as if an entire generation of young Americans have been brainwashed to despise their own country. It’s hard to argue with that point when only 23% of those under 30 believe patriotism is important and 18% are proud to be an American.

However, despite the appalling scenes that have captivated the country for the last two weeks, there is good news. Amidst the campus chaos, a group of young Americans stood up to defend the flag and exhibited a vital cardinal virtue that is often lacking nowadays – Courage.

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At the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill, an anti-American/anti-Israeli mob set its sights on Old Glory – ripping it down to replace it with the Palestinian flag. This desecration is an insult to every American, especially those who have served in our military and paid the ultimate sacrifice. However, the UNC-Chapel Hill Pi Kappa Phi fraternity refused to accept this atrocity.

After witnessing the American flag being torn down, they quickly mobilized to protect the flag from touching the ground. This illustrates their respect for the flag and, more importantly, a profound appreciation for the values it represents. The fraternity brothers defended the flag for an hour as they were being pelted with debris, cursed at, and spit on. These patriots were called fascists and told to kill themselves.

Finally, UNC Chancellor Lee Roberts, accompanied by several police officers, arrived and the American flag was raised once more amid chants of “USA, USA, USA.” Once Old Glory was restored, Chancellor Roberts stated, “The flag represents all of us. Take down that flag, and put up another flag, no matter what flag it is – that’s antithetical to who we are, what this university stands for…That flag will stand here as long as I’m chancellor.” 

Faced with hostility from the mob, it would have been far easier for these young men to turn a blind eye and carry on as so many others have done. Instead, they stood firm and embodied bravery in the face of aggression. When asked why, Pi Kappa Phi member Brendan Rosenblum responded, “We stood there strong, representing what we believe in.” 

Courage is infectious, and the bravery demonstrated by Pi Kappa Phi has now expanded to other campuses. At the University of Mississippi, Ole Miss students gathered to sing the Star-Spangled Banner to drown out the vitriol spewed by anti-American and anti-Israel agitators. Another fraternity at Arizona State University assisted police officers in dismantling an ASU “Gaza Solidarity Encampment.” 

It is refreshing to see young Americans defend and show appreciation for a country that has afforded them endless opportunities and the freedom to exercise their God-given liberties. Unfortunately, far too many people today succumb to cowardice, a trait that should be designated as the eighth deadly sin, as they bow to the intimidation of leftist mobs. 

[RELATED: More than 30 arrested as police end pro-Hamas encampment at UPenn]

 Students frequently seek my advice on how they should interact with biased, leftist professors in the classroom, and I tell them that they have two options. They can be disloyal to themselves and remain silent to get the desired grade, or they can respectfully uphold the values they believe in. I emphasize that there will always be excuses not to speak out – whether it’s to get a good grade, obtain a job, or earn a promotion – but if they choose to remain silent, then when will they ever find the courage to fight for their beliefs? 

It is my hope that we are witnessing a resurgence of patriotism led by a younger generation weary of the anti-American onslaught they have endured. It is the silence of older Americans that has allowed this nonsense to fester for far too long. It should never have progressed to this point, but perhaps this is the necessary catalyst for a much-needed revival of American pride on college campuses.

Editorials and op-eds reflect the opinion of the authors and not necessarily that of Campus Reform or the Leadership Institute.