YAF President Samuel Settle described the event held yesterday:
Today, members of the Penn State Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) set up a Palestinian Wall of Lies outside of the HUB Student Center at the University Park campus. The demonstration began shortly before 1:00, and received an almost immediate hostile reaction from two nearby Arab students. The students described the Wall as “bullshit” and “a f***ing lie,” but were initially nonviolent.
Shortly afterwards, the Wall began attracting significant attention, including from a reporter and photographer with the Daily Collegian student newspaper. Most of the reception was positive; in particular, a group of Israeli students came around to express their support. At this point, one of the two Arab students came back around and began arguing with the YAFfers and Israelis, using abusive language and saying, “I have a problem with Israelis.” The argument lasted for about 3 minutes, during which the aggressor became increasingly aggravated, ultimately demanding that the YAFfers stop filming him. His request was refused, at which point he lunged for, but missed, the camera I was holding. He then kicked over a crate full of YAF pamphlets and stormed off. A photographer from the Collegian was present at the time.
Although this display was disappointing, it was not surprising. This was the only student to actually become violent, but many other students from the MSA came by at various points to verbally denounce the Wall, and often to personally insult those present. None of these people were able to point out a single error on the Wall, and they dispersed once it became clear that they were being filmed.
On whole, the event was a great success. As mentioned, with the exception of some MSA members, the Wall seemed to get a mostly positive reception. Several of the students indicated that they were extremely pleased to see a counter-balance to the anti-Israel narrative frequently promoted on campus.
Read the Daily Collegian’s write-up here. Find out more about the Wall of Lies campaign and sign up to bring a wall to your campus here.
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