VIDEO: Pro-Trump Pitt students have table flipped, lit stolen
An aggrieved student flipped a table with Trump campaign merchandise at the University of Pittsburgh on Thursday.
Beginning around noon, Matt Kerlin, a Pitt student serving as an unpaid volunteer for the Trump campaign, engaged students walking to and from class on the Hillman Library sidewalk on Bigelow Boulevard.
Distributing stickers, koozies, and literature, Kerlin attracted many fellow students who pledged to vote Trump. Many students were also relieved to finally have Trump represented on campus amongst the Hillary Clinton campaign and NextGen Climate tables that frequently adorn campus sidewalks.
Surely enough, Kerlin and fellow tabling participants were met with remarks by students such as “f*uck the white male patriarchy!” and “I can’t believe you guys are actually people.”
Shortly thereafter, students really began to behave aggressively.
“A student came up to us and made a claim about how Trump wants to get rid of ‘his people,’” Kirk Breiner, a Sophomore and tabling participant told The Pitt Maverick.
A man approached and harassed Kerlin and Breiner, claiming that the table was supporting a “racist” candidate. The man grabbed a stack of door-hanger literature and attempted to run off with them, but relinquished the literature unharmed after Kerlin stopped him a few feet away, though not before the perpetrator nearly initiated a fight with him.
“We responded by telling him that that’s absolutely ridiculous, and then he got agitated and grabbed a stack of literature from our table and ran off with it,” Breiner said.
According to Kerlin and Breiner, the situation escalated further around 2:00 that afternoon when two more students approached the table, one of them sweeping all the literature to the ground and the other proceeding to flip it before fleeing the scene.
Steven Evanovich, a sophomore at Pitt, captured a video of the student and then proceeded to contact campus police, who are investigating the incident.
“It’s a shame that different opinions are met with such hostility at institutions of higher learning,” Evanovich told the Maverick. “Calling Trump’s rhetoric ‘hate speech’ actually reinforces and encourages the notion that violence against conservative or dissenting students is justified, and my own campus shouldn’t be a place where my friends or I are fearful for having opposing opinions.”
This article was originally published in The Pitt Maverick, a conservative student newspaper affiliated with the Leadership Institute's Campus Leadership Program. Its articles are republished here with permission.
Follow The Pitt Maverick on Twitter: @ThePittMaverick