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Respect The Corner

By on November 9th, 2016 in Football 9 Comments »

USA TODAY

It’s 2:00 a.m. here in Columbia, Missouri. 

Following an election, tensions are high on a college campus. 

As news coverage is winding down, writing a column about Auburn football just seems a bit insignificant tonight. There will be many articles written and posted about today’s events, and very few will be about sports. I will not make this piece political — you can receive that information from other, much more informed sources. Instead, I will be addressing an event that bothered me tonight; one that affected one of Auburn’s most beloved traditions.

Following Donald Trump’s victory, Trump supporters rolled Toomer’s Corner. And most of those rolling the trees were Auburn students. This is a tradition that dates back to the 1950’s; one of the most storied traditions in all of college football, and one in which Auburn fans take great pride. In the past week, we have seen the trees rolled three times — only once for an Auburn victory. The other two times followed a World Series and a presidential election. 

Rolling the trees for anything not related to Auburn University rips the significance of the oaks away. The whole point of the tradition is to be about Auburn and to be representative of the entire university’s pride and achievements.

I think it’s safe to say that not every Auburn student voted for Trump. So by rolling the oaks following the election, that isolates an entire portion of the student body. The oaks are meant to bring people together, not divide.  

Some of my most cherished memories are from Toomer’s, and when you plaster political banners in front of the oaks, that taints those memories. The trees were not planted to serve as a symbol for any political agenda or campaign. They are there for Auburn, and only Auburn. The Corner has faced too many setbacks in the past few years to be used for anything other than appreciation for the school and its accolades.

To the students: this tradition has been here way longer than you. Respect it.

9 Comments

  1. wpleagle wpleagle says:

    For what it’s worth, I think the rolling of Toomer’s Corner after the Cubs’ win was to celebrate David Ross, an Auburn alumnus, as much as anything. Perhaps that puts a different focus on things ….

  2. ausouthal says:

    I am with you on this. Roll the trees for an Auburn sports victory only.

  3. Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

    …..I would prefer the rolling to remain about Auburn, too. This was a hotly contested election, and one side or the other was going to be greatly disappointed. The best we can do now is to shake your opponent’s hand (especially you folks that your candidate won!) and try to move forward.

    …..It’s going to be an interesting social experiment, the next four years.

  4. neonbets says:

    Trigger Warning!

    Now that I got that out of the way…I’m conflicted with this post. At a fundamental level, I agree–Toomer’s is for Auburn.

    But man, the tone of your post just feels like another screed from an offended college/grad student who exploiting a grievance in order to harangue.

    Since you’re appealing to tradition, don’t forget: The Rolling of Toomers is really for the kids who are in school. If you’re a fully-fledged adult who has already graduated from Auburn, you probably shouldn’t be breathlessly running to the old drug store with a stack of toilet paper rolls. You had your time, now stand down and let the kids who are actually in school enjoy their time.

    And since you’re into asserting directives, how about this: Respect the kids who are on campus, and let them sort this out.

    You’re a budding journalist. You lament the tense atmosphere on college campuses. Do you think you are in an intellectually free environment to voice an opinion that goes against the grain? The kids who rolled the corner probably feel that way too.

    In order to obfuscate outlandish college expenses that demand insane levels of student debt (and stress), college administrators (ie the supposed adults running the place) have re-directed the anger towards the fact the kids are getting ripped off towards the easily inflamed passions of race/gender grievance peddling. In other words, it’s a shell game of distraction.

    But the identity grievance mongering is insatiable; a veritable freight train bearing down on college campuses. And now, college, which is supposed to be a bastion of learning and exposure to different ideas is stripped of any intellectual diversity out of fear of offending, and fear of ostracism.

    So should these kids have hit the corner last night? Probably not. But after witnessing outrageous intolerance in the name of tolerance these past few years, I get why they went out there this morning. And really, it’s a pretty benign way to blow off steam when you think about it.

    Either way–how about we just let them figure it out, and we stick to sports?

    • Tiger Tiger says:

      Think what you will about neon’s comments…sometimes his sarcasm annoys me, too.

      But the man has a way of looking at things from all sides. Some good points above.

      There are worse things in life than tainted memories.

      War Eagle, beat GA.

  5. Col.Angus Col.Angus says:

    Well a quick Google seach shows the Oaks being rolled after Obama won, both in 2008 and 2012. I agree that the oaks shouldn’t be politicized, but lets not be hypocritical and try to tamp down the celebration of one group, while letting the others get a pass.
    We need to get pass this pettiness and “we” vs. “them”, mentality. Let the Trump folks celebrate, like the Obama folks got to celebrate, because the elation will soon pass and the realization that we have some difficult times and hard decisions to make will soon be upon all of us. We all need each other to help heal this country and move in a positive direction.

  6. As a liberal who proudly voted for Hillary Clinton I appreciate other posters being very diplomatic about this article. I do not believe the students should have rolled Toomer’s Corner last night or in 2008 and 2012. It is decisive and could lead to contentiousness if the celebrators were confronted. I was stunned at the outcome and I agree we have some soul searching and healing to do the next four years. We need our political parties to work together and stop being so partisan to appease their base. That said, let’s get back to sports and beat Georgia!!! War Eagle!!!

  7. easyedwin easyedwin says:

    lighten up errybody!
    BEAT the DOGS>>>DAWGS?
    Richt is gone………….it is easier to hate Georgia now!!!
    Beat the kirby frogs!!!!

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