Morehouse Students Turn Their Backs, Walk Out of Graduation as Joe Biden Gives Speech – EVOL

Paras Griffin

While President Joe Biden gave a commencement address (and received an honorary degree) from Morehouse College in Atlanta on Sunday, May 19, several students staged pro-Palestine protests — some turning their backs and others walking out. The students who protested cited the president’s ongoing policy decisions in Israel’s war on Gaza.

Before Biden took the stage for his address, Morehouse valedictorian DeAngelo Fletcher gave a rousing speech calling for an “immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Gaza strip,” and was met with applause from both the crowd and Biden, who also shook Fletcher’s hand. “From the comfort of our homes, we watch an unprecedented number of civilians mourn the loss of men, women and children, while calling for the release of all hostages,” Fletcher said.

The audience also included Morehouse alumni vocally supporting Biden during the ceremony, giving the president a standing ovation as he approached the stage, according to video taken from the event. Meanwhile, some graduates who wore keffiyeh scarves and Palestinian flags opted to turn their chairs away from Biden for the duration of his speech, according to the New York Times. Other graduates walked out of the ceremony as a sign of protest, though the Times notes



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