Recently, an engineering professor at the University of Southern California has taken an open stand for blue lives. Dr. James Moore placed a pro-police Thin Blue Line-themed American flag outside his office door, arguing that law enforcement plays an integral role in protecting all lives, including black lives.
Over the course of an interview with the College Fix, the self-identified libertarian stated that he has faced significant criticism for his refusal to remove the flag from his door. Both students and administrators have complained about the flag.
In addition, a recent article in the Daily Trojan, the school’s newspaper, proclaimed that the “Blue Lives Matter” flag is highly offensive to students, who are presently demanding the removal of the flag.
According to one study, Moore’s flag is purportedly “an inappropriate and unnecessary symbol to have on an office door where USC is,” especially since the university is ostensibly “trying to have a much broader diversity initiative and to be inclusive, especially in the STEM area.”
Another student also griped about Moore in general, demanding for the flag to be taken down, especially in light of the fact that “this is not the first controversial thing he’s done.”
Moore opted to hang up the flag earlier in the semester, and he defended his choice by observing that one of his key job responsibilities is to teach students to think more critically.
“Blue lives protect black lives,” Moore asserted, adding that “black lives are not at risk from police,” but rather “at risk from crime.”
“It’s blue lives that stand between them and crime,” Moore continued.
The professor also observed that an authentic diversity and inclusion initiative would encompass more than just a diversity of racial and ethnic backgrounds; it should also entail a diversity of thought.
“We are in an environment where there is a lot of homogenization of ideas,” Moore commented wryly, adding that “diversity should include diversity of ideas.”
“[This university] is supposed to be a safe space for diversity of thought,” Moore noted, adding that USS is “charging … very good money” to purportedly install critical thinking skills.
“I am just trying to deliver,” Moore added.
Moore proceeded to detail various reasons why he was interested in hanging the flag on his door, one of which includes disputing the widespread notion that the police have engaged in systemic discrimination towards black citizens. Outside of idea disruption, Moore also noted that one of his family members is a retired detective, and the flag serves in part to honor them.
Furthermore, Moore cites a third reason for keeping the flag: Crime is rising at an alarming rate across multiple municipalities and cities, which is directly correlated to the “defund police” movement that swept across the nation in the aftermath of the George Floyd tragedy. Per Moore, homicides have spiked by 30 percent.
“All of [these reasons are] attached to this flag, an unvarnished, objective look at what is happening in the [United States],” Moore observed, adding that the nation needs police in order “to protect us.”
Thus far, the university has defended Moore’s right to hang the flag outside his office.
“The university does not have a policy that limits the display of materials in spaces like this,” a university spokesperson stated, noting that administrators are also “looking at whether it is needed.”
At this point in time, Moore remains free to “express his … individual beliefs on a wide variety of topics,” including “controversial issues.”
USC also added that Moore’s actions and views “do not speak on behalf of … the broader university.”