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Chico State political confrontation

A tense protest on the Chico State campus with university police carefully monitoring the situation was the scene on Nov. 21.

Posted: Nov 21, 2019 7:20 PM
Updated: Nov 21, 2019 10:45 PM

CHICO, Calif. - The political divide in our country runs so deep that it sparked a confrontation between students at Chico State.

A tense protest on the Chico State campus with university police carefully monitoring the situation was the scene on Nov. 21.

It's the hot-button issue that sent emotions flaring.

"Some people were going for Trump, some people were bashing Trump, some people were bringing up race, others were dismissing it," said student Julian Mendoza. "It was a whole toxic situation."

With Chico State trending on social media, students on campus were facing off with differing political values.

"This is a microcosm of what's happening in America," said Mendoza. "It's one thing to disagree with an opponent, it's another to incite violence."

Wednesday's campus confrontation between university republicans and protestors ended with three criminal charges filed.

The Chico State Republicans were accusing protestors of spitting and exposing themselves.

"Yes, I fear for my safety constantly when tabling on Chico State's campus," said Michael Curry, the president of The Chico State Republicans. "What's happening right now is not civil discourse whatsoever."

A barrier, meant to keep students safe, also reflected the deep political divide that exists in this country with conservatives tabling on one side, and anti-Trump protestors standing on the other.

Anti-Trump protestors claim the club promotes hateful views on campus.

"You don't have to silence people. That's what I feel this tent does, every day," said protestor Angelo Gabriel.

"Conservatives values do not mean racism, whatsoever. I believe in limited government, we believe you have the right to defend yourself," said Curry.

In a statement on Wednesday, the University encouraged civil dialogue around polarizing issues but condemning acts of violence.

"We have the right to not agree with someone but we have to be respectful. Violence and harassment are not to be tolerated," said the University's spokesperson, Sean Murphy.

A local campus grappling with the realities of today's political climate with the 2020 election just around the corner.

Campus police are now investigating the criminal charges filed against the students involved in the Nov. 20 protest.

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