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Shippensburg University Responds to Anti BLM Social Media Posts

Updated: Feb 5

By: Tyler Dancisin 1/29/21

The Shippensburg University community is outraged after photos of a fellow student surfaced which expressed remarks that did not sit well with everyone. Olivia Penwell, a Criminal Justice Major at Ship posted on her Instagram account a picture of her posing with a Black Lives Matter sign, but if you were to zoom in on the picture, you then see the real meaning of her post. The sign hid the two words “Do Not” which then portrayed the message “Black Lives Do Not Matter”. After discovering the message and post, the campus community became outraged and called on the university to take action. Hundreds of students tagged the university in several posts begging to get their attention but to no prevail after days of trying. Days passed and no update had been given from the university and students became restless. Lizzie Nee, a Social Work major at Ship, even created a petition calling the university to take action against Penwell. As of January 29th, that petition has nearly 6,000 signatures with more pouring in. Nee said her goal of the petition was simply to bring awareness to the issue and she does not wish for Penwell to get harmed or even expelled from the university but rather educate her on the issue of racism in our society. On Friday evening, Ship students received a long-awaited update from the university but it was the not the answer students were hoping for. The university said in their email, “There is no legal basis for a public university to punish members of our community for their opinions: It is illegal. But there is a social justice imperative that calls us together to solve our community problems.” As of now, more students and people from across the country are becoming concerned with the issue of the student still being allowed to remain at the university. Stay tuned to SUTV News as this is an ongoing story

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