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Some University of Colorado – Boulder students are none too happy about classes resuming Monday on the heels of a massive natural disaster that flooded the state and has left thousands homeless and hundreds still missing, with active search-and-rescue operations ongoing.

A petition on the liberal activist website MoveOn.org came as a response to university officials’ decision to reopen campus Monday, and it garnered about 4,000 signatures by 2 p.m. on Monday – largely by word of mouth on social media sites – before it was mysteriously removed some time last night with no explanation.

MoveOn was one of President Obama’s biggest campaign supporters and is an active left-leaning political action group.

“I signed the petition because their judgment call seemed hasty. It was a little insensitive and untimely,” junior Liv Leyshock, 20, told The College Fix, referring to campus officials. “The rest of Boulder Valley school district was closed.”

CU Boulder senior Bill Shrum, 35, said he signed the petition because he felt students were being punished for circumstances beyond their control.

“I’ve kept in touch with friends that are in Longmont and they can’t be here now,” Shrum said. “They are penalized for not being here and it’s fairly inappropriate.”

Shrum said the petition was an important outlet for students to express their frustrations, but added “I don’t think you are going to see an administrative response.”

While many parts of Colorado are still affected by flood damage, life in Boulder is slowly returning to normal. It has electricity and its residents are focused largely on clean-up efforts now.

The petition, started by an “anonymous student,” claimed the Boulder community was wounded by the floods and it was not right to hold classes and other campus activities while students and others suffer. It encouraged people to sign the petition so Chancellor Philip DiStefano would receive the feedback and re-close the campus. It had been shut down Thursday through Sunday because of the floods. As an aside, CU Boulder is known to rarely offer students a snow day off after a heavy fall.

Many of those who had signed the petition, which has been removed from the MoveOn.org site, were not from Boulder, or even Colorado. One of the signees was from Canada, and others called New York, Washington and Oregon home. Other supporters hailed from Colorado cities such as Littleton and Lakewood.

“Anonymous Student,” the creator of the petition, did not respond to inquiries by The Fix. Little is known about whether they were an actual student or prankster.

The petition did not acknowledge the ongoing efforts of campus administration with victims’ assistance to provide housing, food and emergency services to those in needs.

Late Monday, campus President Bruce Benson and Chancellor Di Stefano sent a campuswide email to students informing them about the additional actions they are taking to rebuild the campus community. In the email they acknowledged the disaster has severely impacted the community in a traumatic way, but added they were helping to address that, including a disaster relief fund and counseling services.

Leyshock said even though she signed the petition, the Boulder community is assisting neighbors, and came together in a time of need.

“If Boulder is one thing, it’s a community,” Leyshock said. “Neighbors taking in other neighbors. There’s unexplainable amount of generosity on this campus.”

Fix contributor Aslinn Scott is a student at CU Boulder.

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IMAGE: Wally G/Flickr

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In the “People’s Republic of Boulder,” by City Council decree, residents are known as “pet guardians,” and now they’ve stretched their roles to guardians of wild life as well.

On Sunday, about 50 people gathered at Pearl Street Mall for a candlelight vigil to demand justice for an adult, male elk shot by a police officer in a suburban Boulder neighborhood on New Year’s Day.

To honor the elk, participants played recordings of elk bugling from their cell phones. They passed out flyers to passersby. They vowed to mount pressure on police as the investigation continues. In addition to the vigil, a silent march took place recently as well.

Since the shooting, town meetings have been held. The chief of police has made statements. An announcement from the district attorney on whether charges will be filed against the police officer, who reportedly failed to handle the situation by the book, is expected today.

Meanwhile, in interviews with The College Fix, some CU Boulder students offered a different perspective, calling the reactions a bit much, even insulting.

Junior Taylor Lane, 20, said she thought the vigil was “extreme.”

“So many people in Boulder are concerned with our ecological, or ethical, facade and this is a perfect example,” she said. “One animal was shot out of season. I’m certain more than that are hit by traffic on a daily basis.”

What’s more, the Boulder community did not hold a vigil for the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn., in mid-December, in which a classroom of young students were gunned down by a mentally unstable gunman.

Senior Mitchell Whitus, 20, said he feels the Boulder community reacted “to the wrong thing.”

“I saw a report on Channel 4 about the vigil, and a lady who was there compared the shooting of the elk to the Sandy Hook shooting,” he said. “I’m appalled that they would compare the shooting to the massacre of children. Why not hold a vigil for the Sandy Hook shooting, instead? It is crazy.”

Nearly half of Boulder’s residents are registered Democrats, and the city is widely understood as the home of “pet guardians” and environmentalists.

Nevertheless, their reaction to the elk shooting also runs in stark contrast to the lack of any uproar over a bear that was tranquilized on the CU Boulder campus last year, then found dead after being hit by a car.

Meanwhile, other students felt the Boulder community used the elk as a symbol to gather around, but failed to hit on the bigger question of the police officer’s conduct in shooting the beloved creature.

Senior Elizabeth Coombs, 22, said the elk is the wrong target.

“I think we should focus on the potential abuse of power by the officer if he was, indeed, on duty when he shot the elk,” she said.

Fix contributor Aslinn Scott is a student at CU Boulder.

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IMAGE: Odolaigh/Flickr

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The student newspaper at Colorado University – Boulder reports that some students drugged their peers and a history professor with pot brownies on “Bring Food Day.” The newspaper states:

Two University of Colorado students are facing multiple felony charges after campus police say they provided marijuana-laced brownies to unsuspecting classmates and their professor on Friday, sending three to the hospital and sickening five others.

The two students – Thomas Ricardo Cunningham, 21, and Mary Elizabeth Essa, 19 – were arrested Saturday night on suspicion of second-degree assault, inducing the consumption of controlled substances by fraudulent means, conspiracy to commit second-degree assault and conspiracy to induce the consumption of controlled substances by fraudulent means.

… CU police responded to the Hellems Arts and Sciences building around 10:20 a.m. Friday on a report of a history professor complaining of dizziness and losing consciousness, Huff said. Paramedics transported the instructor, who has not been identified, to the hospital.

Around 4 p.m., a student’s mother notified CU police that her daughter, who was in that class, was having an anxiety attack and was at a local hospital, according to police.

On Saturday, a second student told CU police she felt like she was going to “black out” after class. She, too, was taken to a hospital for evaluation, according to CU police.

CU police say their investigation revealed that the three hospitalized victims — and five other classmates — were suffering from the effects of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

Police say Cunningham and Essa baked THC-laced brownies and brought them to class as part of a “bring food day,” but didn’t tell their classmates or professor that there were drugs in the baked goods.”

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