Palestinian flag to be hung in skybridge


Sanjay Fernando

The skybridge is home to flags from many countries. While Palestine is not officially recognized as a country, its flag will soon fly there as well.

Principal Carol Goddard approved a proposal drafted by the Muslim Student Association and Young Democratic Socialists of America to hang a Palestinian flag in the skybridge.

“The MSA wants to show that inclusion and acceptance of all people is a vital aspect of being a Watkins Mill High school student,” senior MSA leader Hasham Khan said. “We have the flags of many other countries in the world and the students who pass by them every day get to see their representation. So why not have a representation that is very meaningful to a lot of other people, not just Palestinians.”

Currently, Palestine is not officially recognized as a country but Khan hopes this representation will be seen in other schools in the future. 

The Young Democratic Socialists of America club advocated alongside the MSA for the flag to be hung in the sky bridge. YDSA chair senior Mauro Gonzalez held talks and co-club meetings and showed his support constantly according to Khan. He even invited professors to meetings to speak about Palestine and advocate for the flag to be hung.

As for where the flag will go, “the Palestine flag will replace the flag of South Vietnam.” Khan said. Logistics surrounding the hanging of the flag are not yet confirmed although Khan hopes that the flag is up before the start of the second semester.

Currently, there are no plans to replace any other flags. However, “if there was a request, and someone wanted to come through with it and they garnered enough support for it, I think [the] MSA [and] YDSA  would be more than glad to help them out with that,” Khan said.

The flag of Israel had once hung in the sky bridge but is no longer is there. If there was “any request to hang the flag of Israel in the skybridge, we [the MSA] would come to with open arms because we have no opposition to that flag, nor what it stands for.”

Art teacher Limor Dekel, who is originally from Israel, supports the decision “as long as whoever put it out there feels that it’s connected to them and represents them.” 

Watkins Mill High School is home to a diverse community of students. The flags in the skybridge help remind the students that their culture is recognized and welcomed. The MSA and YDSA hope to extend this sentiment to the Palestinian/Muslim students of Watkins Mill.

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