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Pro-life display vandalized at Clemson


Statement posted on Clemson YAF’s Facebook page on March 14. 

UPDATE (3/28/18 10 p.m.): Story has been updated to include response from Clemson YAF chair Morgan Bailey.

A pro-life display on Clemson University’s North Green was vandalized the week before spring break.

On March 14, the Clemson chapter of Young Americans for Freedom’s (YAF) “Cemetery of the Innocents” display was vandalized and destroyed when the display was left unattended due to scheduling conflicts between classes.

The vandal pulled up the signs and took all but 17 of the white crosses, according to an incident report filed with the Clemson University Police Department (CUPD). The display included a total of 202 white crosses, each one representing 30 abortions, along with signs explaining the display, according to Clemson YAF. The signs were found in a bathroom trash can in Brackett Hall; the crosses were never found.

In a statement released March 14 on their Facebook page, Clemson YAF expressed their sadness over “this act of intolerance by members of the Clemson community,” and went on to state that they “will not let this act overshadow the memories of those that abortion has taken from this world.”

Clemson YAF is a student organization centered around the ideas of “limited government, individual freedom, free enterprise, traditional values and a strong national defense.” YAF is a conservative youth organization, according to its national website.

“While we were not entirely surprised that this happened as it was/is a controversial subject, Clemson YAF is disappointed that someone would violate our free speech rights by vandalizing our display,” Clemson YAF chair Morgan Bailey said in an email to The Tiger about the incident. “We did not provoke anyone and were open to civil dialogue with those who agree and disagree with us. Clemson YAF hopes that CUPD and the school will find who did this and make it clear that it is not acceptable on our campus to shut down another students/organizations free speech whether you agree with them or not.”

The incident is currently under investigation by CUPD, and the vandal was caught on security cameras in the area. The subject in question has long blonde hair and was wearing all black, according to eyewitnesses. At the time of publication, there are no suspects. The CUPD incident report cites the vandalism as “a malicious damage to personal property.”

This isn’t the first time a pro-life display has been vandalized on the Clemson University campus. In October 2014, the Clemson Students for Life’s “Cemetery of the Innocents” display was vandalized and destroyed. In that case, vandals removed signs and crosses, leaving behind pro-choice signs.


The Tiger reached out to CUPD for comment, but did not receive a reply in time for publication.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.


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