As Joey McGinn and dozens of others pulled on different strings, a wall of colorful bricks and words tumbled down.
McGinn, 21, and other UF students saw the bricks covered in negative words collapse on the Reitz Union North Lawn on Friday afternoon.
By the end of it, the bricks lay in a pile, the insults and slurs turned into rubble.
The annual Inter-Residence Hall Association “Writing on the Wall” project focused on how the current political and cultural climate has affected the community, said Anthony Sanchez, the association president.
McGinn said this was his third year attending the event, but it meant more this year because President Donald Trump has said many of the words that were on the wall.
“Us tearing it down shows that just because they’re being said by people in power doesn’t mean that we’re going to stand for it,” the UF political science junior said.
Sanchez said this year’s wall, which included more than 300 words, had new phrases like “illegal,” “terrorist” and “s------- country.”
Event Director Samantha Boddupalli, said some words can reappear since the eventbegan in 2002, but no two words come with the same experience.
With everything going on in the world, Boddupalli said, the project is a way to create a positive impact.
“There are people on campus who will stand with you,” the 20-year-old UF chemistry junior said.