Archive for April, 2009
Students for a Democratic Society will be holding a demonstration outside 151 Patton Ave., #563, the Navy recruitment center, against military recruitment in our community this Thursday, April 23 at 4:00pm.
Our goals are to demonstrate visible opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, expose recruiter lies, and have a direct impact on the war by convincing potential recruits not to enlist. Come out and hold signs, read chants, and protest for a better world. We join others such as the Minnesota Anti-War Committee and SDS at University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in this day of protest.
Out of Iraq!
Out of Afghanistan!
Out of Our Community!
For more information email uncasds(at)gmail.com
UNC-A SDS stands in solidarity with UNC SDS in their April 14th protest of white supremacist Tom Tancredo. We support the right of all student organizations to protest the kind of blatant racism and hatred shown by Tom Tancredo and his supporters. We attribute the unfortunate escalation of the nonviolent protest outside the event to police aggression, and fully support the demand for a standing student review board to oversee and monitor all police conduct on campus.
Although it has been stated that it was not the intent of UNC SDS to shut down the event, UNC-A SDS understands that disrupting and shutting down Tom Tancredo’s speech is a blow against the type of white supremacist hate mongering people like him represent. We see a window being broken starkly contrasted with millions of broken homes and destroyed lives Tom Tancredo has played part in. We are against any kangaroo court action taken against our fellow activists by the UNC system,with the purpose to bypass the bounds of formal judicial process in favor of a sham designed to unfairly and unjustly punish the accused. The heroic actions of UNC-Chapel Hill SDS stand as a shining example of the progressive fight against hate and racism that exists here in the United States. We will continue to battle these abhorrent ideas at every turn and salute UNC-Chapel Hill’s great blow against bigotry.
Please sign the petition here:
This is an article written by our own Jeremy Miller for Fight Back! News. I have decided to post it here because it is a great article that depicts the struggle for College Access for undocumented immigrants. SDS supports C4CA and demands full legalization for the undocumented. For more information, see North Carolina Coalition for College Access. – Doug
North Carolina: Student Walkout for Immigrant Rights
Gabi Lemus and Alikhan Salehi speak at the March 31 rally at UNC-Asheville.
Asheville, NC – Over 150 students, community activists and members of the Coalition for College Access (C4CA) gathered on the campus quad for a walkout and rally, raising the demand “Education for all!” at the University of North Carolina at Asheville (UNCA), March 31.
The rally was one of many actions across the state to support education for all people, not just persons born in the U.S. It opposed North Carolina legislation barring undocumented immigrants from attending community colleges. Seven campuses across North Carolina participated in similar coordinated actions around this issue. During the week of March 21, C4CA members on UNCA’s campus tabled, held “Immigration Realities” workshops, and showed the movie, Walkout, about the beginning of the Chicano student movement. The buildup culminated March 31, Caesar Chavez Day, when students met up on the quad for the walkout and rally shouting, “Sí se puede!”
The C4CA formed on UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus May 2008 and is held together by a belief that all academically qualified students should have access to higher education. The statewide action came on the heels of the C4CA’s Summit held at UNCA on January 31.
“What we were looking to do is come up with some tangible ideas to fight for college access this time around,” said Alikhan Salehi, a member of C4CA and one of the organizer’s of the Summit. “The immigration issue is very divisive. When you talk to people about the importance of a college education, you can find a common ground with folks regardless of their background. Not allowing people to get an education creates a sub-class of citizens that doesn’t help society. People are forced to be second-class citizens.” The Summit included a “Student Realities Workshop,” a walkout/rally planning crew meeting and filmed testimonials on how college access has affected people present.
The Associated Student Government recently voted up Resolution 19, called “An Act Encouraging the Board of Trustees of the North Carolina Community College System to restore Universal College Access.”
“This gives us a foothold, but really helps us in name only,” remarked Salehi, who is also a member of the student government at UNC-Asheville. “It’s a good place to start, but we have a long way to go.”
The walkout and rally were a great success. People came together to rally around the issue of education rights for undocumented immigrants and other oppressed nationalities. Speakers addressed the need for comprehensive immigration reform, accessible education and multinational unity.
Gabi Lemus, co-president of the UNCA campus group HOLA (Hispanic Outreach for Learning and Awareness) had this to say about the rally: “The purpose of having the walkout and the rally was to show our support for college access for all and specifically for community colleges in North Carolina to reopen their doors to undocumented students. We firmly believe that higher education is a basic human right that must not be denied to anyone. Having a rally provided us with the opportunity to express this belief and gave us a chance to attenuate misconceptions about the issue of college access in hopes of gaining even more support from our campus community and peers.”
On April 9, recruiters from the U.S. Army thought they could sneak past University of North Carolina-Asheville (UNCA) progressives and radicals to recruit for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Right away, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) was notified and several others mobilized to block their access to potential recruits outside the Dining Hall on the UNCA campus. Around a dozen students jumped into place holding anti-war and anti-recruitment signs. We were able to swiftly shut down the recruitment booth within an hour.
Members of UNCA SDS, the new student body president, and several from the College Democrats stood outside and showed that they would not leave. Doug Michel, a member of SDS, said, “Recruiters lie while soliders die! Every year, military recruiters come on to campuses and target young people for ‘career opportunities’ in an institution that is run by murder, racism, homophobia, and sexism. Working class and nonwhite youth are targeted the most. By protesting recruitment and telling people the truth, we are jamming a wrench into the war machine.”
News of the UNCA budget being cut by 3-4% and then by 7% by the end of next fiscal year has sparked interest in fighting for education rights (see “Updates Concerning State Budget Cuts,” UNCA website). We know that usually, LGBTQ, women’s, and diversity studies along with other social services (health and counseling programs) are cut first, while the school administration takes little to no pay cuts. Slogans during the demonstration read, “Fund education, not occupation!” to address the effects of the economic crisis and wars.
In the past, SDS has vowed that we will protest any attempts by military recruiters to use our campus to gather cannonfodder. We know that the U.S. is still failing in Iraq as attacks have risen in the past several days. Likewise, our presence in Afghanistan is only providing more suffering to the millions of impoverished Afghanis. Our military is not being used to “spread democracy” or “protect our freedoms,” but to consolidate political and economic control in the Middle East and South Asia. The U.S. wants us to fight for Iraqi oil and Afghan supply routes – but the students and youth say no!
U.S. Out of Iraq and Afghanistan!