A Remembrance Day memorial was vandalized by Palestinian activists at the University of Calgary on Friday, the day before Canada’s most solemn holiday.
The mural, dedicated to the memory of Canadian veterans, was covered with pro-Palestinian messaging sparking a wave of discontent across the campus community.
The original murals, a gesture of gratitude towards those who served Canada in times of war, was crafted in part by Fletcher Guty, a political science student with personal ties to the armed forces.
Guty, whose lineage includes veterans and a relative who was a prisoner in a Japanese camp, has voiced his disapproval of the activists’ actions. “Remembrance Day is about honouring our veterans,” he said, emphasizing the sacrifice of those like his grandfather who fought for the rights Canadians hold dear, including free speech and protest.
“I’m all for freedom of expression, but painting over something that expressed our gratitude to our veterans and family members who fought the day before Remembrance Day is completely disrespectful,” he added.
“The Rocks” on the University of Calgary campus are a hot spot for free expression, where students and groups are allowed to use paint to share opinions and celebrate events.