Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someone
File photo
File photo
St. John's students started a petition to replace Congressmember Peter King as the university's graduation speaker this year.

Students are in talks with administration after a petition to replace Congressmember Peter King as St. John’s University’s commencement speaker surpassed 1,000 signatures, The Courier has learned.

An online protest against the Long Island representative hit headlines last week, when students called for the school to dump King as this year’s key note speaker.

“Congressman King has had his say. Now it is our turn to speak,” reads the petition, which was started by senior Jonaki Singh.

Outraged students were against “discriminatory and offensive comments” they said King made throughout his congressional tenure on issues like bilingual education and domestic terrorism.

“At a school with such a diverse student body, the views that Congressman King represent will be contradictory to our experience and who we are striving to become,” the petition says.

Nearly 1,100 former and current students and faculty have signed the petition as of April 22.

The number is now enough for administration to listen to their concerns, sources said.

St. John’s did not comment on the discussions between students.

King said he was proud to be chosen as St. John’s commencement speaker and sad the school had to be “dragged into this fight.”

“Students at St. John’s University are protesting my selection as this year’s commencement speaker. That, of course, is their right even though they are misguided and wrong,” he said in a statement. “But the right of free speech and academic freedom is paramount, and I commend St. John’s University.”

The Johnnies graduate on May 19.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Comments:

Join The Discussion



Related Stories
Queens News Quiz: How well do you know this week’s news?
Queens News Quiz: How well do you know this week’s news?
Cops buckle down on knifepoint robberies, Denny’s is coming to Queens and 8 more top stories this week
Cops buckle down on knifepoint robberies, Denny’s is coming to Queens and 8 more top stories this week
Popular Stories
Photos by Robert Stridiron/RHS NEWS
UPDATE: Cops identify the three victims in a violent bus crash at a Flushing intersection
Photo courtesy of the Nassau Council Police Department
Whitestone teen arrested after being linked to major LI & Queens drug bust: police
Photos by Suzanne Monteverdi/QNS
Tempers flare at rally over the city's plan to build Bayside and Douglaston bike lanes


Skip to toolbar