ABC, CBS Ignore Frat Bros Who Saved American Flag from Pro-Hamas Mob

Last week, a group of heroic Pi Kappa Phi fraternity brothers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill saved an American flag from being torn down a desecrated by a mob of anti-Semitic/pro-Hamas student extremists. But in the week since the incident occurred, the flagship morning and evening newscasts of ABC and CBS ignored the incident, while NBC only gave their heroism in the face of evil anti-Americanism a fleeting eight seconds on NBC Nightly News two nights later.

To be fair, the broadcast networks were too busy whining about the pro-Hamas encampment at Columbia University being busted by the NYPD. ABC in particular was also busy lying about the UCLA encampment being “largely peaceful.” And CBS was busy worrying that the protests could hurt President Biden’s reelection chances.

ABC and CBS might argue that they thought that the flag-saving incident didn’t rise to a level that would allow it to be considered a national story, but that’s debunked by the fact that at least NBC gave it a few seconds.

NBC correspondent Liz Kreutz tucked the frat bros into a much larger report on the college encampments generally. “This American flag at UNC put back in place and protected in part by a group of fraternity brothers after protesters had replaced it with a Palestinian flag,” she said.

On Thursday’s edition of NewsNation’s On Balance, host Leland Vittert spoke with three of the brothers to get a sense of what it was like in the moment and what it’s been like since the video of them saving the flag went viral.

“When we saw our brothers there defending that flag, there was no doubt in any of our minds that we’re going to go and join them,” Zachary Serinsky explained. “I’m glad that it was able to be put to an end. And the way that it did eventually. But yeah, we were there defending our brothers and there wasn’t going to be anything that was going to stop us from going to that flag.”

When asked about the GoFundMe campaign set up on their behalf to pay for a party (which at the time of the interview had raised over $400,000) and the John Rich concert they were getting as a reward, Trevor Lan stated:

I mean, I think that we can all agree that we didn’t anticipate that that part of it would occur, but we did know that it’s important to stand strong on our beliefs and to be a representation of what we hope to see for Jewish students and for students who believe in our flag and democracy across the country.

Brendan Rosenblum said that people have reached out to them about job opportunities, “But again, like, that’s not what this was about. It was just to bring attention to the issue we believe in.”

He was also hopeful about how their actions changed the conversation on campus. “People are talking to both sides about it and trying to have constructive dialogue because they realize that what happened on our campus is not okay and we have to figure out a way to move forward together,” he said. “And that’s the biggest, the most positive thing that came out of this. And I think that’s something that we both, and everyone there can be proud of.”

The transcript is below. Click “expand” to read:

NewsNation’s On Balance
May 2, 2024
7:07:54 p.m. Eastern

(…)

LELAND VITTERT: I want to bring in the boys here in a second. Zachary Serinsky, Brendan Rosenblum, Trevor Lan. The guys who are in that video. Brendan, we had you we had you yesterday. Start with Zachary, real quick.

You guys just did what you thought was the right thing. All of a sudden. Are you surprised by the result?

ZACHARY SERINSKY: I’m not. first of all, thank you for having us. We’re all happy to be here. When we saw our brothers there defending that flag, there was no doubt in any of our minds that we’re going to go and join them.

I’m glad that it was able to be put to an end. And the way that it did eventually. But yeah, we were there defending our brothers and there wasn’t going to be anything that was going to stop us from going to that flag.

VITTERT: All right. But Trevor, I think about this. Right, okay. A couple days ago, you guys did the right thing. You weren’t doing it for fame or for glory. You were doing it because you thought it was the right thing to do. You were there with your brothers who were taking a stand and now you’re on TV with John Rich, who is going to play you a concert with $400,000 worth of free beer. That’s pretty cool.

TREVOR LAN: Yeah. I mean, I think that we can all agree that we didn’t anticipate that that part of it would occur, but we did know that it’s important to stand strong on our beliefs and to be a representation of what we hope to see for Jewish students and for students who believe in our flag and democracy across the country.

VITTERT: Brendan, tell me what’s happened in the past 24 hours and the conversations you’ve had.

BRENDAN ROSENBLUM: Yeah, I think first of all, we’ve definitely got a lot more media attention. And for us, it’s not about fame, it’s not about coolness. It’s about bringing attention to our message. Stand up for what you believe in, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. For me, it’s when your values are questioned that’s when it matters. It’s easy to believe in something when no one – it’s easy – But when people question that, that’s when it’s important to stand by them.

(…)

1:12:57 p.m. Eastern

ROSENBLUM: I think there’s been a lot of outreach, there’s definitely been job opportunities. But again, like, that’s not what this was about. It was just to bring attention to the issue we believe in. And I think the biggest thing we saw from this is people are talking about it. People are talking to both sides about it and trying to have constructive dialogue because they realize that what happened on our campus is not okay and we have to figure out a way to move forward together. And that’s the biggest, the most positive thing that came out of this. And I think that’s something that we both, and everyone there can be proud of.

(…)

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