The Students for a Democratic Society at the University of Minnesota have some demands. And on Friday they staged a formal protest to try and get what they want.
What exactly are they asking for?
They want the administration to disarm campus police and increase diversity within the student population.
The group hosted a sit-in outside of university president Joan Gabel’s office on Friday in an attempt to get school administrators to acknowledge them, according to a report from MN Daily.
“This is essentially a reminder that we expect these demands to be met,” said Jackson Bianchi, one of the students who helped organize the event.
What’s driving their demands to disarm the police? The UMPD doesn’t have a history of violence or instances where they used their weapons in controversial or non-essential ways.
UMPD’s website provides a warm welcome to visitors.
“We are committed to partnering with our campus community to ensure our students, faculty, staff and visitors are safe. DPS focuses on providing exceptional public safety services to our diverse campus community. We believe everyone deserves a safe and secure learning environment.”
We expect the movement is part of a growing trend of anti-police rhetoric spreading throughout the country, especially in colleges and universities. The truth of the matter is, these officers are here to protect and serve.
So let’s say they get what they want and police are forced to turn over their guns. If someone shows up on campus wanting to commit acts of violence, how long would it take Minneapolis police to respond to the scene? How many more lives would be lost due to the response time?
So in the meantime, who is going to run after that threat?
Surely not these students.
But, oh wait. That very situation happened just a few years ago…
In 2013 an armed robbery on campus prompted police to advise students to seek shelter while they attempted to locate and apprehend a man with a gun.
That same report also noted a trend in assaults and robberies in the areas surrounding the school’s campus.
In 2018, more officers were hired to help cut down on increased crime happening off campus.
But now, because of some perpetuated narrative that police are evil and enforcing a system of oppression, these students want to put everyone at risk by taking away their protection.
Students At The University Of Minnesota Demand Campus Cops Be Disarmed: A small group of students at the University of Minnesota protested outside the school president’s office Friday demanding campus police officers be disarmed. The College Fix reported… https://t.co/xzPJZjoVe7 pic.twitter.com/ftcfZvZnsn
— The Daily Wire (@realDailyWire) October 7, 2019
The students hosted a similar protest last year, which they said was the “perfect opportunity for the University to leverage themselves on a progressive course in society and … nip in the bud any circumstances where police can murder people.”
So how many actually showed up to the sit-in?
And one student even skipped out early to get to an exam.
“I have a midterm in half an hour,” a freshman student said. “I agree with the resolutions, I just have to balance social justice with school.”
These aren’t the only college students pushing for drastic change within their school.
The student government at the University of Oklahoma just said that in an effort to protect free speech… they’ve banned the Pledge of Allegiance.
The school’s student government goes by the name “undergraduate student congress” and routinely meets throughout the semester to deal with issues regarding the student body.
But lately they’ve taken up a new battle – getting rid of the Pledge of Allegiance during school meetings, calling it “incompatible” with the United States Constitution.
Crazily enough, the student who authored the resolution originally raised her concerns in an effort to make the group more inclusive.
“For us to be, like, the best most inclusive body, I thought that we should remove it,” said student Gabi Thompson.
They took a vote and the measure to ban the pledge during the student government meetings passed, 15 – 11. This is reportedly the first time that someone has taken issue with the pledge within the group since it was created in 2008.
On Tuesday night, the Oklahoma University Undergraduate Student Congress passed a resolution removing the Pledge of Allegiance from the congressional agenda. https://t.co/BkzF8eo2WR
— KFOR (@kfor) September 28, 2019
So where do these students take issue? Apparently when it comes to God.
“The Pledge of Allegiance is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment as pledging your allegiance to the flag of the United States as one nation under God conflicts to our rights to free exercise of religion, freedom of speech, and to petition the government for redress of grievances,” the statement from the group’s resolution stated.
KFOR’s report argued that banning the pledge in its entirety stifles the First Amendment rights of those within the room that wish to recite the words, keeping them silent.
Students within the group who pushed to abolish the pledge said that the pledge’s connection to Christopher Columbus was wrong, noting that the town where the university is located no longer celebrates Columbus Day, but instead celebrates Indigenous People’s Day.
“It was written as a celebration of Columbus Day in 1892, and in the city of Norman we don’t celebrate Columbus Day, we celebrate Indigenous People’s Day,” said Thompson.
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Other students who were in favor of keeping the pledge fired back against the resolution, calling it un-American.
“I think that’s just pretty much a load of crap,” said one student. “Not reciting the Pledge of Allegiance is un-American,” said another.
A similar axing of the pledge happened earlier this year when the Santa Barbara City College Board of Trustees slashed the pledge from its meetings, calling it racist and in violation of the First Amendment.
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Not everyone was onboard with that decision either, with college professors firing back at the change.
“When you recite the Pledge of Allegiance you are recommitting your oath to uphold and defend our country’s Constitution,” said former Santa Barbara Community College professor Celeste Barber.
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