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On Tuesday, January 29, around 4 PM PST, a student at Stanford University was caught on camera stealing flowers from the Cemetery of Innocents display on campus, co-hosted by Stanford University Students for Life and Stanford University College Republicans.
In an exchange, the student, members of Stanford University Students for Life, and SFLA Regional Coordinator Anna Bakh repeatedly ask the student to return the flowers, but the student refuses and tries to downplay the theft. The student counters at one point to say that Students for Life isn’t being respectful by opposing abortion and having a display up on campus.
After repeatedly refusing, Bakh calls campus security and reports the incident. A student off-film repeatedly asks what he is hoping to accomplish and why he would purposely ruin his day, and the student asks, “I don’t know why you have to do this to other people”, presumably referring to being pro-life. It’s only as Bakh is speaking to campus security that the student relents and returns the flowers.
Anna Bakh, Northern California Regional Coordinator for Students for Life criticized the thief, saying, “The SSFL’s memorial of the lives lost to abortion was a beautiful display that sparked many mind changing conversations. It is sad to see a student not only attempt to destroy such a beautiful memorial, but to also refuse to converse with us.It is unacceptable that students resort to vandalism when they disagree with the prolife viewpoint. We encouraged this particular student to dialogue with us and participate in an open conversation, rather than resorting to destruction. Unfortunately, this has become a theme across the nation and even Stanford University is no exception.”
Students for Life of America has a campus vandalism map tracking theft and destruction of property against pro-life groups, primarily Students for Life groups, on campuses across the country, going back to 2012. You can view the map here.