Alert readers will remember that yesterday (Wednesday, 8 April), the news came out that the University of Michigan, home of the Wolverines, had canceled a campus screening of the movie American Sniper. (Which, incidentally, I liked tremendously.)
The proposed showing of Sniper reportedly made students feel unsafe. The university explained the basis of its decision:
While our intent was to show a film, the impact of the content was harmful, and made students feel unsafe and unwelcome at our program.
College Fix quotes from an online memo objecting to the movie:
The online memo, titled a “collective letter from Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) and Muslim students on campus,” accused the public university of “tolerating dangerous anti-Muslim and anti-MENA propaganda” by showing the movie…
“Chris Kyle was a racist who took a disturbing stance on murdering Iraqi civilians,” the collective letter stated. “Middle Eastern characters in the film are not lent an ounce of humanity and watching this movie is provocative and unsafe to MENA and Muslim students who are too often reminded of how little the media and world values their lives. … The University of Michigan should not participate in further perpetuating these negative and misleading stereotypes.”
Although the memo appears to have been removed from the link, College Fix got a screen-grab of it.
So that was that, until Coach Harbaugh tweeted this on Wednesday night:
Michigan Football will watch “American Sniper”! Proud of Chris Kyle & Proud to be an American & if that offends anybody then so be it!
— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) April 9, 2015
(H/t: Blaze.) The response was overwhelmingly positive.
@CoachJim4UM way to go, Coach! Proud to call you a fellow American! The NFL misses ya already!
— Jeffrey Button (@bootaun) April 9, 2015
@CoachJim4UM I am proud of you for taking a stand.
— Jeanne Rogers (@msjeannerogers) April 9, 2015
And lo and behold, the Blaze was able to update its story on Thursday to reflect that the university had reversed its earlier decision. Detroit Free Press reporter David Jesse tweeted this later on Wednesday night:
Jesse did convey the university’s explanation:
That “further discussion” is some powerful stuff.
Just another reason for Michigan fans to cheer the timely return of Jim Harbaugh. It’s on, Urban.