Michigan State University Apologizes For Hitler Image Shown Before Game
Michigan State University is scrambling for answers after an image of Adolf Hitler was displayed as part of a pre-game video routine. According to NPR, ahead of a rivalry game against the University of Michigan on Oct. 21, a trivia question about the dictator’s place of birth included an image of him on the stadium jumbotron.
Michigan State said it's "deeply sorry" after an image of Adolf Hitler appeared on its video boards during a pregame trivia segmenthttps://t.co/yJGS47d8Ph
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) October 22, 2023
Statement from AD Alan Haller. MSU suspended an unspecified employee with pay for the video board showing an image of Adolf Hitler before the game vs. Michigan. pic.twitter.com/UDPWbJuhTx
— Chris Solari (@chrissolari) October 22, 2023
The video comes from a YouTube page called The Quiz Channel, which is run by Floris van Pallandt, who, once made aware the university featured his video, posted a message on his page.
“To be clear, I was unaware Michigan State University is using my content for stadium entertainment, and this was unsolicited and unauthorized use,” van Pallandt wrote. “A random history trivia question in an inappropriate setting.”
University officials apologized, saying that it was reflective of a failure on the part of the university to screen content and that they would not be using the third-party source responsible for putting the video in their package. Michigan State Vice President and Director of Athletics Alan Haller told NPR, “An initial assessment was conducted, and an involved employee has been identified and suspended with pay pending the results of an investigation. The investigation will determine any future appropriate actions.”
Michigan State’s board of trustees spoke to Haller and the university’s interim president, Theresa Woodruff and made it clear to them that they expect accountability for what transpired.
The board also released a statement, “The projected image was unacceptable, and as the oversight body for MSU, we want to publicly apologize to everyone who was in Spartan Stadium or learned of this through other means.”
The incident is also notable because it occurred on the same day that a Jewish synagogue leader was killed. She was a beloved figure in the Detroit community, and Haller’s apology alludes to the attitudes that led to the murder.
“Antisemitism must be denounced,” Haller said. “The image displayed prior to Saturday night’s game is not representative of who we are and the culture we embody. Nevertheless, we must own our failures and accept responsibility. I understand our response might be met with skepticism. That skepticism is warranted, and we will do all that is necessary to earn back your trust.”