Wednesday, December 7, 2011

May We Please Protest, President Gordon?

The following is an excerpt from a work-in-progress called The Town I Live In.

Fascist shenanigans are afoot at Cal State Fullerton. In light of growing student protests against tuition hikes and bloated executive compensation, CSUF President Milton Gordon issued "President's Directive No. 5." If it sounds like something out of George Orwell's 1984 or the Vietnam War days, it is.

The directive reads, "Public meetings, performances, rallies and similar events may be held by students and faculty in accordance with procedures approved by the president."

So, basically, if students or faculty want to protest the fact that, in the past 12 years, president Gordon's salary has increased by 71% while adjunct faculty salaries have increased by 7% and student fees have increased by 238%, they have to do so in a time, place, and manner dictated by the president, the very person they are protesting.

If I'm not mistaken, the First Amendment gives all Americans the right to assembly and petition, especially on a PUBLIC university campus. Many of the major social movements of the 20th century have begun on college campuses.

The reason given by the president for this directive was that the protests might interfere with normal campus activities. Um, well, that's kind of the point of a protest. If president Gordon tries to suppress peaceful protestors, even if he uses the University Police as enforcers, the Constitution is not on his side.

Here's a tip for protesters. You have the right to protest, and no presidential directive can stop you. Last time I checked, we live in a democracy, not a dictatorship. Know your rights, and excercise them! No justice, no peace.

Read the full article in the Daily Titan HERE.

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