Print

Galindez writes: "This time the scene of the crime was the University of California, Davis. Police once again sprayed fuel on the fire in the form of pepper spray, and lots of it. The target? Students sitting peacefully with arms interlocked on the University's quad."

UC Davis Police Lt. John Pike uses pepper spray to move Occupy UC Davis protesters blocking a walkway in the quad on Friday, 11/18/11. (photo: Wayne Tilcock/Davis Enterprise)
UC Davis Police Lt. John Pike uses pepper spray to move Occupy UC Davis protesters blocking a walkway in the quad on Friday, 11/18/11. (photo: Wayne Tilcock/Davis Enterprise)



UC Davis Police Violence Adds Fuel to Fire

By Scott Galindez, Reader Supported News

19 November 11


Reader Supported News | Perspective

 

Occupy Wall Street: Take the Bull by the Horns


n response to the crackdown on Occupy Wall Street and the pepper-spraying of an 89-year-old woman in Seattle I wrote, "Fanning the Flames of the Revolution." Quite simply, I argued that each violent crackdown by the police against non-violent protesters does little more than "fan the flames" of Occupy protests and, in many cases, adds fuel to the fire of the Occupy movement.

It happened again on Friday afternoon.

This time the scene of the crime was the University of California, Davis. Police once again sprayed fuel on the fire in the form of pepper spray, and lots of it. The target? Students sitting peacefully with arms interlocked on the University's quad. Some were positioned across a pedestrian walkway. It is wide enough for small utility vehicles, but is clearly not a roadway open to traffic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AdDLhPwpp4

The students had gathered around an area that had earlier housed their tents. What an ominous threat to the community! Beware of students protesting in the quad instead of throwing a kegger party in a dorm!

The police had already removed the tents. All that remained of Occupy Davis was a banner hanging from a tree that read "Save Public Education." How dare they call for such a radical agenda on a campus in the California University system? The students sitting across the campus walkway chanted the subversive line: "Don't shoot students." How is this a threat to riot-clad police?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuWEx6Cfn-I

Perhaps the really subversive, supposedly "threatening," act was in the simple interlocking of their arms.

Last week The San Francisco Chronicle quoted UC Berkley Police Capt. Margo Bennett:

"The individuals who linked arms and actively resisted, that in itself is an act of violence. I understand that many students may not think that, but linking arms in a human chain when ordered to step aside is not a nonviolent protest."

In fact, Captain Bennett thought that it was okay to use batons to push back the Berkeley crowd, so we shouldn't be surprised that the UC Davis police took it one step further and used pepper-spray to pry apart those threatening arms.

In Berkeley and in Davis, the goal was to break up Occupy encampments. In Berkeley, the police were trying to get to tents. In Davis, the tents were already gone. In both cases one wonders what exactly is so threatening about students camping on the quad? What is so "violent" about sitting with arms joined together?

Wait ... they might just learn something! But it's a lesson plan not approved by the Board of Regents.

Apparently, it would be better to force them back into their frat houses and sorority houses so they can get drunk before returning to their corporate-funded classrooms on Monday morning. We can't have them learning about the effects of corporate greed all weekend, out in the open air of the campus commons. That must be why they moved in at 5pm on a Friday afternoon. What would the town pubs do if the students were camping on the quad instead of doing shots 'til they passed out?

All kidding aside, the scary thing is some of my sarcasm is probably not far from the truth. But the real effect of Friday's police action at UC Davis is that this coming Monday at noon the students will be back, likely in much larger numbers. The pepper-spray fired by the police on Friday further fanned the flames of the revolution. When will they learn the relationship between cause and effect?

Watch the end of this video if you have any doubts about the outcome.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmJmmnMkuEM


Scott Galindez attended Syracuse University, where he first became politically active. The writings of El Salvador's slain archbishop Oscar Romero and the on-campus South Africa divestment movement converted him from a Reagan supporter to an activist for Peace and Justice. Over the years he has been influenced by the likes of Philip Berrigan, William Thomas, Mitch Snyder, Don White, Lisa Fithian, and Paul Wellstone. Scott met Marc Ash while organizing counterinaugural events after George W. Bush's first stolen election. Scott will be spending a year covering the presidential election from Iowa.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner