Protest Delays Harvard-Yale Football Game

Protestors addressed climate change and profiteering in Puerto Rico

Yale Bowl
On Saturday, Yale Bowl was the site of both an exciting football game and a heated protest.
Kenneth Zirkel/Creative Commons

The rivalry between fellow Ivy League teams Harvard and Yale is a long-running and storied one. But it turns out that some students there have an even more important rival in mind: what they believe to be unethical practices on the part of their universities. At 1:40 p.m. on Saturday, the game between the rival teams stopped for halftime, and Yale’s band began to play. Then, things took an unexpected turn.

ESPN reports that students at both universities staged a protest on the field. The protest lasted for a little under an hour, and several students were arrested. The game resumed at 2:48 — but, because Yale Bowl lacks any lights, the game’s conclusion (in double overtime, no less) took place under poorly-lit conditions. Yale won, 50 to 43.

Video of the event shows a number of students racing onto the field to take part in the protest.

While most of the protestors were there to call attention to climate change, that wasn’t the only cause represented in the protest. ESPN’s article on the protest notes that protest signs called attention to several issues:

Some protesters held banners asking their universities to act on climate change and Puerto Rico debt relief, including one sign that read, “Nobody wins. Yale & Harvard are complicit in climate injustice.” Another read, “This is an emergency.”

The Boston Globe’s article on the protest includes more information, including a statement from the protestors concerning the reasons for their action. “Students are tired of Harvard and Yale profiting off of climate destruction and neocolonial investments in Puerto Rico’s debt,” they said. Strong words — and a gesture that may prove more compelling than the game it interrupted.

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