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Jakki
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01 May 2024, 5:51 pm

Republicans got this election covered.. They seem to want to put Kennedy into the election , As a"spoiler"to divide the the vote..So Trump will have better odds of getting enough votes . Thinking people, will vote for Kennedy based on his family name . Cause they will figure , he is better of the three choices.. But his politics is as crazy as Trumps, even moreso .imho.. Then if Republicans play their cards right . Kennedy may back out at the last moment and hope to swing all the Republican votes to Trump... might have written this elsewhere on WP,, but , i do believe ,i saw this tactic used in a long ago election , In the USA presidential races . 8O....Republicans cater to the evangelica religions .
Politics as Usual . am not sure the America citizens of the Corporate US of A , will even get a voice in this
situation . I do not know of Any clearheaded individual . That would vote Trump directly or indirectly .imho
If there is any effect Citizens can actually have on this election :?: You can bet, because of the diverse opinions,on Israel .
The Evangelicals will be the swing vote . :roll:
Have been some meetings here, and sat quietly where my gut was telling me to flee..As the Republicans in lower political offices had private meeting with at least two groups of these Religious zealots. I did not know ,you could do that to a crowd of informed people ?And the entire Room,
was doing this head bobbing routine ( in Agreeance).. As the speaker spoke glowingly about Trump . They appeared as if they were slmost hypnotized . 8O 8O 8O :ninja: . Even a ex us army veteran got up and told some story through , his tears about he would support the country . Almost would have thought I was watching a staged presentation..
Did end up bailing out alittle early but did see the official end of the meeting. Then saw slmost a similiar production done in a big church . As a presentation to the congregation...Even had a couple of Doctors testifying about the graces of Trumps ideas . Was wondering why noone went Postal at either one of these meetings. It really scared me. :skull:


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Last edited by Jakki on 01 May 2024, 6:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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01 May 2024, 5:56 pm

NBC News Live Updates

Quote:
Fordham tells encampment protesters they are suspended
Fordham University told student protesters this afternoon that they would receive an “interim suspension” in light of “serious violations” of the university’s policies.

Protesters at the encampment were distributed fliers directing them to leave Fordham University property immediately.

The university said it was also immediately suspending students from on-campus housing, classes, final exams and all events, including senior week and commencement.

“You may not enter Fordham University property for any reason during the period of this interim suspension without permission from my office,” Jenifer Campbell, the dean of students for Fordham University Lincoln Center, and Christopher Rodgers, the dean of students and assistant vice president at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus, said in the statement.

UAW president calls for arrested protesters to be released
Shawn Fain, president of the United Auto Workers union, called for the detained protesters to be released following a night of mass arrests.

In a thread on X, Fain said his union would never support the mass arrests of those exercising their rights to speak out against injustice.

"We call on the powers that be to release the students and employees who have been arrested, and if you can’t take the outcry, stop supporting this war," Fain wrote.

The UAW executive board voted to approve a call for a cease-fire in December and some UAW signs were seen at solidarity protests around Columbia University yesterday.

External review ordered into events at UCLA campus after violent attack on encampment
University of California officials issued statements today condemning the violence at its Los Angeles campus overnight and an independent, external review has been requested.

UCLA Chancellor Gene Block released a statement noting that a group of protesters came onto campus to "forcefully attack the encampment" and promised a full investigation into the matter. He called the attack "utterly unacceptable" regardless of one's feeling on the anti-war encampment.

"It has shaken our campus to its core and — adding to other abhorrent incidents that we have witnessed and that have circulated on social media over the past several days — further damaged our community’s sense of security," Block wrote.

Michael V. Drake, president of the university system, released a statement noting that though at least 15 injuries were reported, the situation has been stabilized.

"My office has requested a detailed accounting from the campus about what transpired in the early morning hours today," Drake said. "But some confusion remains, therefore we are also ordering an independent external review of both UCLA’s planning and actions, and the effectiveness of the mutual aid response."

Columbia says all students at encampments have been suspended
All Columbia University students who remained at a large encampment and two other smaller ones on campus past a Monday deadline have been suspended, a university spokesperson said today.

“At this time, all participants in the encampments are suspended, unauthorized to be on university property, and if found are trespassing,” said Ben Chang, vice president for communications.

“The disciplinary process continues,” he said.

The number of students expelled or who face expulsion for being involved in the seizure and occupation of Hamilton Hall remains unclear, and Chang did not have those numbers this afternoon.

The university has said any students who occupied that building face expulsion.

The NYPD was asked to intervene and clear protesters from the encampments and Hamilton Hall last night, and did so, making over 100 arrests, officials said.

“These were not peaceful protesters,” Chang said of those who broke in and occupied Hamilton Hall. He said there was “severe damage to that building.”


House passes antisemitism bill with broad bipartisan support amid campus arrests
Quote:
The House on Wednesday passed a bipartisan bill aimed at combating antisemitism as pro-Palestinian protests roil colleges across the United States.

The measure passed in a 320-91 vote. Twenty-one Republicans and 70 Democrats voted against the legislation.

The bill, titled the Antisemitism Awareness Act, would mandate that the Education Department adopt the broad definition of antisemitism used by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, an intergovernmental group, to enforce anti-discrimination laws.

The international group defines antisemitism as a "certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews." The group adds that "rhetorical and physical manifestations" of antisemitism include such things as calling for the killing or harming of Jews or holding Jews collectively responsible for actions taken by the state of Israel.

The bill's prospects in the Senate are unclear.

Asked whether the Senate would take up the legislation, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told reporters earlier Wednesday that "we haven't seen what the House is sending us yet."

Rep. Mike Lawler, R-N.Y., introduced the bipartisan legislation, which received backing from Democratic moderates who are supporters of Israel amid the country’s war with Hamas.

“In every generation, the Jewish people have been scapegoated, harassed, evicted from their homeland and murdered,” Lawler said before the vote in a House floor speech.

"The Jewish people need our support now," he said. "They need action now."

The bill comes as Republicans seek to launch investigations into antisemitism on college campuses in response to the pro-Palestinian protests. The current version of the legislation was introduced in late October after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel but brought to the floor this week.

In a letter Monday to House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., wrote “there is nothing scheduled on the floor this week that would accomplish the concrete, thoughtful strategies outlined by the Biden administration” to combat antisemitism.

Jeffries had demanded a vote on the bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act, which aims to address concerns over rising antisemitism through the appointment of a new adviser to the president who would be dedicated to implementing its coordinated strategy to counter antisemitism.

“The effort to crush antisemitism and hatred in any form is not a Democratic or Republican issue,” Jeffries wrote. “It’s an American issue that must be addressed in a bipartisan manner with the fierce urgency of now.”

Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told reporters on Tuesday that she wouldn't support Lawler's bill and argued that Republicans are weaponizing antisemitism.

“We all have to continue to speak out against antisemitism and be clear that we don’t like — we will not tolerate antisemitism any more than we tolerate Islamophobia or any of the other hatreds and discriminations that are out there,” she said.

Jayapal also argued that the bill “has a definition that is so broad” that many Jewish groups do not support it.

“So why would you do that? Except if you want to weaponize antisemitism, and you want to use it as a political ploy,” she said. “Let’s remember that many of these Republicans didn’t say a word when Donald Trump and others in Charlottesville other places were saying truly antisemitic things.”

Separately, Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., said that the definition was so broad that it would threaten constitutionally protected free speech.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., also said she would vote against the bill over a disagreement with an example of antisemitism listed in the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's definition, which referred to using "symbols and images" such as "claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel" to describe Israel or Israelis.

Greene argued in a post to X that the bill "could convict Christians of antisemitism for believing the gospel that says Jesus was handed over to Herod to be crucified by the Jews."

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., said he would vote against the bill for similar reasons, pointing to the same example of antisemitism, which is considered harmful by many Jews.

"The Bible is clear," he wrote on X. "There is no myth or controversy around this."


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02 May 2024, 6:10 am

NBC News Live updates

Quote:
Police clash with protesters at UCLA
Tense scenes continue at UCLA, where police were seen to clash with protesters just before 2 a.m. (5 a.m. ET).

Aerial video footage also showed police apprehend at least one person outside the encampment, near where hundreds of protesters have gathered to support the encampment, outside an area closed off to the public.

Police have formed a line to prevent any more protesters from entering the encampment area in Royce Quad — but aerial footage also appeared to show officers pulling back from the encampment area and walking away after the scuffles broke out.

An order for protesters to leave the area or face arrest was repeated over a loudspeaker.

Police scuffle with protesters at UCLA as they try to reach encampment area
Police have scuffled with protesters who were blocking the entrance to the area of the UCLA pro-Palestinian encampment.

A group of several hundred California Highway Patrol officers in riot gear arrived at the UCLA campus in several buses at around 5.30 a.m. (2.30 a.m. ET) and aerial footage from the Reuters news agency showed them clashing with protesters around 5.45 a.m. (3.45 a.m. ET).

Bottles and other items were thrown at police officers amid chants of “We’re not leaving! You don’t scare us!”

Police move in, begin tearing down UCLA encampment after long standoff
Police in riot gear have begun moving in and pulling down boards that pro-Palestinian protesters had used to fortify their encampment on the UCLA campus. Tents and gazebos were carried away by officers.

A series of loud bangs can be heard — NBC Los Angeles reporter Anastassia Olmos is on the scene and reported that flashbangs were being set off by police.


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02 May 2024, 11:14 am

Same source as above

Quote:
1,900 arrests at school protests nationwide
So far, there have been 1,900 arrests at college protests across the country, according to an NBC News tally.

The arrests came from at least 60 colleges and institutions participating in protests and encampments in solidarity with the Palestinian cause and calling for their schools to divest from Israel.

Some of the latest numbers include:

Twelve arrested at the University of New Hampshire last night — 10 of them students and two not affiliated with the university, all charged with disorderly conduct and trespassing.

Four arrested at Yale last night — two students and two non-students, charged with criminal trespass and disorderly conduct.

Twenty-nine arrested at Stony Brook University shortly after midnight — 22 students, two faculty members and five others for "violating various laws"

Hundreds of protesters arrested, at least one officer injured at UCLA encampment
Hundreds of people have been arrested in connection with UCLA's pro-Palestinian encampment, a CHP spokesman said this morning.

It's not immediately clear how many were students, faculty or not affiliated with the campus.

Those arrested are expected to be booked at the Los Angeles county sheriff’s downtown Los Angeles jail and other facilities around the county, according to a senior law enforcement source familiar with the matter.

At least one officer was injured but it’s not clear what the injury was. It’s also not immediately clear if any of the protesters were injured, the source said. The CHP spokesman said objects, including water bottles, were thrown at officers.

NYC mayor: More than 40% of protesters arrested at Columbia, CUNY not affiliated with schools
New York City Mayor Eric Adams said this morning that preliminary numbers indicate that more than 40% of those arrested at student protests at Columbia and CUNY were "not from the school and they were outsiders."

"I just had gut reaction based on my years in law enforcement, and I asked the intelligence division of the police department to look into it, do an analysis. Do we see familiar faces of people around the protests? And they came back substantiated on the Columbia grounds, and on other grounds, that there were those who were professionals who participated in training," he said.

Exams and academic activities postponed at Rutgers
Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, announced this morning that exams and other academic activities scheduled before noon today on the College Avenue campus “have been postponed.”

The move was made “due to anticipated escalation of protest activities and out of an abundance of caution for the safety of our students.”

University of Minnesota reaches agreement with protesters to end encampment
The University of Minnesota announced this morning that administrators have reached an initial agreement with pro-Palestinian protesters to end the campus encampment.

It comes after multiple meetings with student organizations including the UMN Divest Coalition “representing multiple views regarding the conflict in Palestine.”

As part of the agreement, closed buildings will be reopened at noon and the student coalition has agreed to not organize “disruptions” at final exams and commencements.

“While we do not condone tactics that are outside of our policies, we appreciate student leaders’ willingness to engage in dialogue. I value the challenging and healthy conversations we’ve had,” interim President Jeff Ettinger said in a statement.

The agreement, which was sent to the encampment organizers last night, outlined six points of progress, including an opportunity to address the board of regents regarding divestment May 10, a meeting on accessing publicly-available information on university expenditures, amnesty from criminal charges by police and an agreement to not pursue university disciplinary action against students or employees who participated in the encampment.

The agreement noted that administrators would meet with Jewish student leaders today, “as we aim to

Police begin to clear Portland State University library occupied by protesters

Police began an operation to clear Portland State University's Millar Library, which has been occupied by pro-Palestinian protesters since Monday.

Earlier this morning, Portland State University issued an alert saying: "Millar Library is closed. NO ONE is authorized to be in the library. Anyone remaining is committing criminal trespass."

The Portland Police Bureau said it was closing several blocks around the library amid the operation, anticipated to last “several hours.”

The police effort is in collaboration with Portland State University, and comes after “numerous attempts to begin a dialogue with the participants,” to no avail.

Tents return to UW-Madison campus, one day after clashes with police
One day after clashes between protesters and police culminated in arrests, 25 tents were re-established at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

At least two police officers in regular uniform were seen surveying the area from a distance.

This morning, the chancellor is meeting with a few protest leaders, but protesters say they’ll only be satisfied when they have confirmation the university will take action on their demands including divestment, cutting ties with Israeli institutions and calling for a cease-fire.

“I think our concerns with any agreement that we come to is that we want to make sure that the agreement results in our demands actually being met, not just our demands being subject to further discussion by the administration,” Dahlia Saba, a first-year graduate student in engineering and encampment participant, told NBC News.

Columbia University professors call for vote of no confidence in President Shafik

The Columbia University chapter of the American Association of University Professors called for a vote of no confidence in President Minouche Shafik following the “horrific police attack on our students.”

In a statement this morning, members said they “unequivocally condemn” Shafik’s decision to call in the NYPD to clear out Hamilton Hall and encampment protests — a move they said was made without consulting the University Senate, “in violation of established procedures, by recourse to so-called emergency powers.”

She did so, in the face of efforts by the AAUP and faculty to “de-escalate the situation.” The statement noted that faculty, staff and students were locked out of campus prior to the police raid, and remain so.

“The choice of Columbia’s administrators to ignore University statutes and customary practices honored over the past six decades, to have our students violently arrested, and to impose a militarized lockdown of our campus, has irrevocably undermined our trust in them,” the statement said.

In contrast, the chapter noted how Brown University had agreed to start a process with students to bring protester demands before their Board of Trustees, which resulted in the “peaceful disbanding of that encampment.”

The chapter called for the University Senate and representative faculty bodies of individual schools to pass a vote of no confidence in Shafik, the co-chairs of the Board of Trustees and the COO, demanded campus be immediately reopened and the NYPD withdrawn “at once.”

“A vote of no confidence in the President and her administration is the only way to begin rebuilding our shattered community and re-establishing the University’s core values of free speech, the right to peaceful assembly, and shared governance.”


Biden condemns campus violence: 'Order must prevail'
Quote:
President Joe Biden on Thursday urged that "order must prevail" as pro-Palestinian protests rock college campuses across the country, emphasizing that violent protest is not protected under the law.

Breaking days of silence on the issue since the arrests of students and other protesters at Columbia University, the University of California, Los Angeles, and elsewhere, Biden emphasized that “peaceful protest is in the best tradition of how Americans respond to consequential issues” and that the U.S. is not a “lawless country.”

“Violent protest is not protected — peaceful protest is," the president said. "It’s against the law when violence occurs. Destroying property is not a peaceful protest."

Biden also said that antisemitism, threats of violence against Jewish students, hate speech or violence of any kind have no place on any campus.

“Whether it’s antisemitism, Islamophobia or discrimination against Arab Americans or Palestinian Americans, it’s simply wrong,” he said. “There’s no place for racism in America. It’s all wrong, it’s un-American.”

“I understand people have strong feelings and deep convictions," he added. "In America, we respect the right and protect the rights for them to express that, but it doesn’t mean anything goes. It needs to be done without violence, without distraction, without hating and within the law."

In response to a shouted question by a reporter asking whether college campus protests have made him reconsider any policies on Israel's conflict with Hamas in Gaza, Biden replied, “No.”

The president also said “no” to a separate shouted question asking whether he thinks the National Guard should intervene in the campus protests.

In his remarks Thursday, Biden also criticized “those who rush in to score political points” from the protests, saying that “this isn’t a moment for politics, it’s a moment for clarity.”

Biden did not specify who he was referring to, but his remarks come as former President Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has attempted to blame Biden and Democrats for the violence that has broken out during campus protests.

Trump has repeatedly decried the protesters as being part of the "radical left" and has called out Biden for his lack of intervention or objection to the campus protests as police have moved to quell demonstrations.


Columbia University radio station WKCR praised for live broadcast of college protests
Quote:
As the New York Police Department raided Columbia University’s Hamilton Hall on Tuesday night to arrest pro-Palestinian protesters camped inside, there was one outlet that many onlookers turned to for live updates: WKCR.

Listenership of WKCR was so high that night that its website crashed. The website was still experiencing intermittent outages as of Wednesday afternoon.

The radio station is one of several student news outlets across the country — including The Columbia Daily Spectator, UCLA’s The Daily Bruin, USC’s The Daily Trojan and UT Austin’s The Daily Texan — that have become go-to sources for information about protests at college campuses.

On Tuesday, reporters from mainstream media outlets had their access restricted by Columbia, so student journalists used their unique positions as members of the community to report on the event. Elsewhere across the U.S., journalists at national and local outlets have also said they’ve been turned away from some campuses if they didn’t have college IDs.

As a result, many following along online have turned to students — many who are juggling classes or finals and reporting nonstop amid a barrage of breaking news impacting their communities.

On Tuesday, many listeners of WKCR — including The Daily host Michael Barbaro — commended the students for their work, calling the future of journalism bright.

Columbia has a long history of student activism. The occupation of Hamilton Hall was reminiscent of students’ takeover of the same building in 1968 to protest the Vietnam War. WKCR was also an instrumental source for live updates on campus during that time.

In their broadcast on Tuesday, WKCR journalists said they faced difficulties in reporting on the raid despite their access to the campus. Some reported that they were prohibited from exiting Pulitzer Hall, or else they risked being arrested. Other WKCR staff that were outside of the building were reportedly restricted from entering for hours.

At times, they disputed claims made by public officials.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams said on Wednesday that while there were students involved in the occupation of Hamilton Hall, the protesters were “led by individuals not affiliated with the university.” He did not specify how many students and non-university affiliated officials NYPD believed were involved in the protests.

WKCR reporter Alejandra Díaz-Pizarro said during Tuesday’s broadcast that “many” of the outlet’s sources “confirmed that the people on those buses were students.”

“These are people who have seen these students in classrooms, people who have seen them on campus, that have perhaps lived on the same dormitory floors and so on,” she said. “I’m sure it brings no joy to students to be reporting on their peers being loaded into NYPD correctional buses and any implication that the occupiers of Hamilton Hall were not students is a serious knock on the students ability to recognize and see their own peers.”

The journalists also documented the hurdles they faced — reporting on what they described as a lack of communication between the university and the community regarding the deployment and retention of police presence on campus for the rest of the academic year.

As they shared live updates, the journalists appeared candid about the emotional and physical toll that covering the protests and the administration’s response had on them.

Georgia Dillane, program director at WKCR, previously told Mother Jones about the unique challenges that the team has faced in covering the protests.

“I think I speak for a lot of the people here and that we’ve never done something like this to our bodies and to our souls,” Dillane told the outlet. “And so that has been something that has been challenging, just like understanding, like balancing the intense motivation we have to bring this coverage out into the world, but also recognizing that there are limits to what we can handle.”

On Wednesday morning, the station released a statement on social media announcing that it would be “maintaining reduced coverage of the situation on campus starting tomorrow.”

“While we will be taking some much-needed physical and emotional recuperation, our staff continues to be paying attention to developments on and around campus, and we are prepared to report on them as necessary,” the statement read.

Columbia Journalism School Dean Jelani Cobb reportedly sent a memo commending the work of the student journalists.


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02 May 2024, 6:52 pm

NBC News Live Updates

Quote:
Chaotic scene at jail as UCLA protesters are cited and released
It was a chaotic scene outside the Twin Towers jail this morning as UCLA protesters and counterprotesters who were arrested overnight were being processed.
The streets around the downtown jail were closed and a crowd was gathered outside the jail, chanting, "Free, free Palestine!" Every time an arrestee came out of the center, the crowd would clap and cheer. They were being cited and released.

A business owner across the street said the crowd began gathering around 9 a.m.

Some UCLA faculty members had also come to the reception center to show their support for their students.

At the jail's inmate reception center, many young people who appeared to be college age stood outside with tickets in hand. The crowd erupted in cheers every time someone stepped outside.

Some of those arrested came out in tears.

Los Angeles County public defenders and National Lawyers Guild attorneys also arrived to offer legal help.

Volunteers passed out bagels, tamales, water and other snacks to those arrested.

Northeastern University: 98 arrested in campus protest, 63 not affiliated with school
Northeastern University said 98 people were arrested after police Saturday cleared out an encampment that formed last Thursday.

Twenty-nine of the arrested were students, six were faculty and staff members, and 63 were people not affiliated with the university, a school spokesperson said in a statement.

The school said university police concluded that the protest would soon present a threat to the safety of those involved after it drew a number of protesters not affiliated with the school. Multiple notices were given to disperse before police moved in.

Students who produced valid Northeastern IDs were released and will face disciplinary proceedings, not legal action.

UCLA protester says encampment was peaceful until counterprotesters and police came
Benjamin Kersten, a UCLA student and member of the student group Jewish Voice for Peace, said the encampment was peaceful until counterprotesters stormed in and police swarmed the area.

“I’ve spent lots of time in the encampment,” Kersten said this morning, with flash-bangs set off by police audible in the background. “It’s clear to me that this encampment would have been a peaceful endeavor if not for the continual presence of counterprotesters and now a very large, significant presence of law enforcement. It’s an intense scene here.

“I’m hearing that peers and colleagues of mine are being thrown into the ground and possibly hurt with rubber bullets.”

Asked about outside groups’ hijacking protests, Kersten said: “I’ve certainly seen community support for the encampment. But I would describe the encampment very much as student-led. I think what I found most concerning is the rotating presence of counterprotesters, including their late hours of the night.”

“The university had any chances to take meaningful action and hear out their students concerns about what matters to them, in this case pressuring the university to divest and boycott in an effort to end its complicity in an ongoing genocide against Palestinians. And instead, the university chose a course of nonaction,” Kersten added.

UCLA arrestee says police 'just kept shooting' tear gas and rubber bullets
Ginger Shankar, a Los Angeles resident who is not a UCLA student but joined the campus protests, heard police helicopters begin circling above UCLA’s encampment around 9 o’clock last night.

Four hours later, she said, chaos erupted as police shot tear gas and rubber bullets into the encampment indiscriminately.

“They were so crazy,” Shankar said. “They just kept shooting.”

Around 5:30 a.m. today, she joined dozens of protesters who had locked arms to prevent police from entering the encampment.

She said she heard an officer say: “Whose arm are we going to dislocate?”

UC Santa Barbara pleads with protesters to show 'collegiality'
Administrators at the University of California, Santa Barbara, are pleading with the protesters to cut the graduating class some slack.

"UC Santa Barbara has a tradition of student engagement and activism in which students exercise their First Amendment while respecting the rights of the entire campus community," UCSB said in a statement.

But, the statement continued, "many students who were deprived of their high school graduation ceremonies by the pandemic four years ago are now looking forward to their UCSB Commencement and the culmination of their undergraduate education."

"We owe it to them to allow them to complete their studies in an environment that supports teaching and learning. We encourage everyone to work together to protect the safety and collegiality of our academic community."

UCSB reported that protesters staged an "unpermitted rally" on Wednesday and erected an "unauthorized" encampment on the campus.

"We recognize that the violence and suffering in the Middle East have caused great distress in our campus community and we urgently hope that a peaceful resolution will be found," the statement said.

NYPD accidentally officer fired gun in Hamilton Hall
A NYPD officer accidentally fired a gun inside Hamilton Hall on Tuesday when police entered it to clear it of protesters, officials said.

The City first reported that an officer fired his gun inside Hamilton Hall, on Columbia’s campus.

Doug Cohen, as spokesperson for the Manhattan district attorney’s office, confirmed the office was reviewing the incident, as is its policy for such incidents, he said.

“Nobody was injured, and no students were in the immediate vicinity,” Cohen said, adding the gun was not aimed at anyone.

The NYPD said an emergency service unit officer was searching an area on the first floor and was trying to access a barricaded area. The officer was using his firearm, which had a flashlight, to illuminate the area and find the best way through when he accidentally discharged the gun, police said.

A single round was discharged and hit a frame in the wall a few feet away, police said.

No one except police personnel were within “sight or sound” of the discharge, the department said. Body camera video has been sent to the DA’s office.

Arrests after protesters re-enter library at Portland State University
Eight arrests have been made after people pulled down a fence and re-entered the Millar Library on Portland State University's campus, Portland, Oregon, police said.

Pro-Palestinian protesters occupied the library Monday. Portland police closed the area around it and began clearing the building this morning.

Police said protesters left a slippery substance on the floor, which they claimed was intended to make officers entering the building slip and fall. Over 20 arrests were made today.

This evening, Portland police arrested seven people and campus police arrested one person after people tore down fencing and re-entered the library.

Portland State University said that its campus was closed today and that no one was authorized to be in the library.

University of Pennsylvania asks Philadelphia for help as protest grows
The University of Pennsylvania today asked the city of Philadelphia, where its campus is, for help as protests have escalated and as an encampment has grown, the university said.

“Protest activity began to escalate overnight and has steadily continued, with large crowds in and around College Green today. We have reached out to the City of Philadelphia to ensure we have the necessary resources to keep our community safe,” the university known as Penn said in a statement.

The university said earlier that there was a large demonstration on the College Green that affected pedestrian traffic, and Philadelphia police were assisting.

Penn property has also been defaced, the university said. It also said protesters were using “threatening rhetoric and chants.”

Today a group of Jewish students and other pro-Israel protesters rallied and went to the university president's office on campus to call for an end to the encampment, NBC Philadelphia reported. Penn professor Benjamin Abella told the station they have seen flags of “known terrorist groups” at the encampment, and they've heard what they consider hate speech, including calls for "intifada," or uprising.


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03 May 2024, 12:11 am

Echoing US encampments, anti-Israel students across Britain launch campus protests

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Pro-Palestinian students across the United Kingdom began holding anti-Israel protests and sit-ins at campuses Wednesday, driven by solidarity with similar encampments across the United States and by outrage at the arrests at Columbia University in New York and the violent crackdowns at UCLA in Los Angeles, British media reported.

At Goldsmiths, University of London, pro-Palestinian protesters barricaded themselves in the library Thursday and placed “From the river to the sea” and “Shut it down for Palestine” banners in the windows, according to The Telegraph.

Earlier in the day, a 24-year-old Goldsmiths student named Samira, a member of Goldsmiths for Palestine, told The Independent: “I think a lot of people are really inspired by what’s going on in the US. We feel a duty as students to come out and protest when you’re seeing like, fellow students in the US… smashed up by riots, and all of that, but, yeah… I think people are really inspired.”

Responding to the phenomenon, the Union of Jewish Students (UJS), which represents 9,000 Jewish students in the UK and Ireland, issued a statement on Thursday saying: “Jewish students are angry, they are tired, and they are hurt by the continuous torrent of antisemitic hatred on campus since October 7… Let us be clear, we will not stand for this hatred. It is time that universities take their duty of care to Jewish students seriously.”

The UJS statement added that as Jewish students were about to undertake their exams, their peers “seek to replicate scenes of hatred from US campuses, with protesters already having called to ‘globalize the intifada’ to support the Houthis in Yemen and to not ‘engage with Zionists.’”

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s official spokesman said Thursday: “We have always been clear that Jewish students must feel safe on campuses, and whilst our universities rightfully pride themselves on their openness and tolerance and diversity, it is obviously absolutely clear that any antisemitism shouldn’t be tolerated.”

However, protests and encampments have continued to sprout throughout the country. Students at the University of Bristol said they were protesting their university’s “complicity in Israel’s genocide of Palestinians,” while also calling for a ceasefire.

A group in Sheffield called the Sheffield Campus Coalition for Palestine held demonstrations, staged a mass walkout from classes and set up an encampment outside the student union on Wednesday. One student told The Guardian: “We’ve come prepared for the South Yorkshire weather. We’ve got gazebos and picnic tables and a generator for power. We’ll stay indefinitely until the university meets our demands.”

At the University of Leeds, students also said they planned to remain indefinitely outside their student union until the university was “longer complicit in the oppression of the Palestinian people.” On Thursday afternoon, the students staged a sit-in on campus. Online footage shows the students entering a building, holding banners and chanting slogans to “end the occupation.”

In Newcastle, a group called Newcastle Apartheid off Campus, which bills itself as a “student-led coalition fighting for an end to Newcastle University’s partnership with defense companies supplying Israel,” announced on X Wednesday that “students from Newcastle Apartheid off Campus have set up an encampment on Newcastle University’s main campus to highlight the institution’s investment strategy and its complicity in the Israeli military’s war crimes in Gaza and the West Bank.”

The organization claims that Newcastle University signed a deal with Italian defense and security company Leonardo SpA, which they say sells military components and machinery to Israel, and that the company is helping to develop “missile targeting systems that are being used to bomb Gaza.”

Manchester University has ties with both Tel Aviv University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Students there called on the university to sever those ties and halt all “unethical research.” They also demanded the university end its partnership with BAE Systems and other arms companies.


Pro-Palestinian protests expand to Chicago high schools
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Chicago high schoolers have joined the pro-Palestinian protest movement engulfing college campuses nationwide.

Why it matters: Despite efforts by university officials to tamp down protests, the demonstrations seem instead to be spreading to younger students, who targeted Wednesday because it marked college decision day for many.

The latest: Students from Jones Prep High School in the South Loop staged a sit-in on Wednesday to support Palestinians, while a counter group of Jewish students said they planned to rally holding Israeli flags.

Similar sit-ins took place at Hancock Prep in West Eldon and a handful other high schools.
Zoom in: Some Jewish parents gathered outside Jones College Prep High School during Wednesday's sit-in, including Claudia Mendelson, who told Axios her children were nervous: "I think they're scared. They feel uncomfortable."


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03 May 2024, 4:22 am

So it seems that we needed to pass more bills against any typr of freedom of speech?


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03 May 2024, 5:46 pm

Princeton students launch hunger strike for Gaza as tensions brew on campus

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Princeton University students launched a hunger strike on Friday announcing they wanted to call attention to the suffering of people in Gaza and to demand the university divest from companies tied to Israel's military campaigns.

The hunger strike comes a week after students launched a Gaza Solidarity Encampment and after 15 protesters were arrested — two while setting up tents and 13 who who took over Clio Hall on Monday in a sit-in that lasted about 90 minutes before police shut it down. Students said administrators have ignored their requests for meetings and the two sides have clashed over events that took place at Clio Hall.

"Millions of Gazans continue to suffer due to ongoing siege by the State of Israel. Two million residents now face a man-made famine. Join us as we stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people," organizers said in an online statement.

Fourteen students have joined the hunger strike, organizers said early Friday. They plan to strike until the administration meets with students to discuss disclosure about their investments, and about divestment and cultural and academic boycott of Israel, they said. They also called for amnesty from criminal and disciplinary charges for participants of the sit-in, and to reverse campus bans and evictions of students from housing.

Clash over events at Clio Hall
The students involved in the sit-in face trespassing charges and a disciplinary process that may lead to suspension, the withholding of degrees or expulsion, Rochelle Calhoun, vice president for Campus Life, wrote in an email to the campus community on Tuesday.

The Department of Public Safety is investigating others who participated in the sit-in "and more criminal charges may be forthcoming, along with additional University discipline," Calhoun added.

Princeton officials called the sit-in at Clio Hall a "serious breach of this university’s code of conduct" and "completely unacceptable" and said the students would face serious charges." Calhoun said community that protesters surrounded, yelled at and threatened staff, and treated them in an "abusive" manner.

Students said they did not yell or threaten anyone and that their sit-in was peaceful.

Ruha Benjamin, a Princeton professor who was there as an observer, also Calhoun's account "bore no resemblance" to what she and others witnessed. She said no head administrator came to Clio Hall to see what was happening or talk to students.

Calhoun's letter was misleading and inflammatory, Benjamin wrote, as it "claims that peaceful protesters could constitute a threat, especially toward armed law enforcement."


NBC News Live Updates
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ACLU suing on behalf of banned Indiana University student and professor
The American Civil Liberties Union went to court today on behalf of at least three people banned from the Indiana University campus after they protested in support of Palestinians, the group said.

Bloomington resident Jasper Wirtshafter, tenured professor Benjamin Robinson and grad student Madeleine Meldrum were demonstrating at Dunn Meadow, a 20-acre campus space that's designated for protests, when they were arrested and later banned, the ACLU said.

More banned people could be added to the lawsuit later, the ACLU said.

University of Wisconsin wants encampment ended soon, protesters say
University of Wisconsin administrators want a protest encampment taken down before finals start next week, but talks to end the ongoing action have stalled, demonstrators said today.

The university will not open books to show if any investments are benefitting Israel and the Jewish state’s ongoing military action in Gaza, protesters said.

School officials told protesters they want a resolution before finals and offered a meeting tomorrow to discuss demands, which organizers said would be “pointless” without disclosure of the university’s investments.

A university spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment on Friday.

Police cleared a protest on Wednesday. It was not clear on Friday afternoon whether police action was again being considered.

University of Tennessee head defends action against protesters
The University of Tennessee defended its action against protesters last night, saying demonstrators can't "monopolize university property for an indefinite period of time."

While Chancellor Donde Plowman insisted the school views free speech as "the backbone of any university," she also said protesters last night went to impermissible outdoor locations, forcing campus police action.

"We apply laws and policies to everyone equally and without prejudice to preserve the use and enjoyment of university property and protect the safety of members of our community," Plowman said in a statement today. "A group of individuals does not have the right to monopolize university property for an indefinite period of time."

Nine people, seven students and two others, were arrested.

Columbia president defends action to break up encampment
Columbia President Minouche Shafik defended the university's action in breaking up a pro-Palestinian encampment saying Columbia had made "sincere" offers to protesters before they "crossed a new line" to occupy Hamilton Hall.

She called the past two weeks among the most difficult in university history, filled with "turmoil and tension" as students protested Israeli military action in Gaza by camping out on a campus lawn.

"The university made a sincere and good offer but it was not accepted," she said in a video statement posted to Instagram. "A group of protesters crossed a new line with the occupation of Hamilton Hall. It was a violent act that put our students at risk, as well as putting the protesters at risk. I walked through the building and saw the damage which was distressing."

How Columbia University protesters organized before law enforcement moved in
Pro-Palestinian activists who set up a sprawling outdoor encampment on Columbia University’s campus divided themselves into two groups to stay organized.

In one group were protesters who were willing to be on the front lines of a possible confrontation with law enforcement. They were ready to be arrested imminently. In another group were protesters who stood ready to help their fellow demonstrators — but wanted to avoid arrest and potential charges.

In interviews with NBC News and videos recorded at the pro-Palestinian encampment in April, activists explained how elements of the protest were organized, providing a window into a tense standoff that divided the Columbia community and seized national attention.

In an interview last week, an undergraduate student from Bangladesh who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was concerned he could lose his visa explained that he was part of the so-called “yellow” group — a squad of protesters who wanted to avoid being handcuffed and taken away by police, but nonetheless tried to bolster the activist campaign in other ways.

“When you’re yellow, essentially, you are not prepared to be arrested,” the student said. “But you are willing to provide all sorts of other support … [such as] locating picketing, making supply runs into and beyond the encampment.” He described these as “challenging tasks” that would also “not actually have … legal repercussions.”

Another Columbia undergraduate from Mexico who provided only her initials because she is an undocumented immigrant and fears deportation, said last week she spent hours a day in the encampment before university officials threatened to suspend those students.

She joined a supplies “platoon” — a subgroup formed by pro-Palestinian campus organizers. She said some of those platoons volunteered to be first in line for arrest or agreed to be configured in human chains when police officers arrived.

In a video recorded late April 23, an unidentified protest organizer in a green hoodie and black mask explained that the other team — the “red” group — would be made up of people “who prefer to be arrested today, or imminently.” The crowd surrounding the organizer can be heard cheering during his speech — and a police helicopter can be heard circling overhead.

In a dramatic escalation early April 30, a group of the protesters stormed Hamilton Hall, shattering windows and barricading doors.

NYPD arrest 13 while clearing 'illegal' encampment at NYU
At least 13 people were arrested this morning while police cleared a pro-Palestinian protest encampment at New York University, NYPD said.

NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell told NBC News that protesters were given the options of leaving or being arrested.

Kaz Daughtry, NYPD deputy commissioner of operations, said in a post on X that police were moving in after NYU "requested our assistance to disperse the illegal encampment on their property.

Daughtry shared footage from a camera worn by an officer as several moved through the encampment advising protesters to leave.

"If you guys want to leave, you're more than welcome," the officer said. "Grab your stuff and go if you'd like to leave."

The clip showed multiple protesters emerging from tents and silently walking away, as a loudspeaker blared a message in the background.

Police arrest 43 while clearing encampment at The New School in New York
Police arrested while 43 people clearing out a second college in New York City this morning, with officers moving in to remove protesters from The New School.

NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell told NBC News that protesters were given the options of leaving or being arrested.

Earlier, the NYPD confirmed it was removing protesters from NYU.

Kaz Daughtry, deputy commissioner for operations, said on X that police had moved in at the request of The New School, to assist in dispersing the "illegal encampment inside their university center building and residence hall."

Daughtry shared police video showing officers inside the building addressing the camp. One office tells them: "You got two choices: Right now you're trespassing in this building, that is not a summons," adding that they can leave.

Daughtry also shared a letter from The New School requesting police action, which says protesters have ignored pleas to leave and have damaged university property.

"It is with deep regret that we ask NYPD's help in removing the trespassing individuals," the letter said.

The New School, based on Fifth Avenue, describes itself as a university "for scholarly activists, fearless artists, and convention-defying designers founded in 1919."

The school's biography on X says: "We welcome dissent."

Protesters, UC Riverside come to agreement, ending encampment
Leaders of an encampment, protesting Israeli military action in Gaza, and UC Riverside officials struck a deal today that would lead to an end of a tent city, school officials said.

The school agreed to publicize all campus holdings and form a task force aimed at developing "ethically sound" investments, according to a UCR statement.

"This agreement does not change the realities of the war in Gaza, or the need to address antisemitism, Islamophobia, and other forms of bias and discrimination," UCR Chancellor Kim Wilcox said, "however, I am grateful that we can have constructive and peaceful conversations on how to address these complex issues."


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04 May 2024, 6:47 am

Who were the ‘outsiders’ at Columbia University’s Hamilton Hall?

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When James Carlson was arrested inside Columbia University’s Hamilton Hall, he was already under investigation for snatching an Israeli flag out of a man’s hand near campus and setting it on fire.

That wasn’t the first time Carlson, who has no affiliation with Columbia, had run afoul of the law. He was arrested in San Francisco in 2005 during a violent protest organized by an anarchist group, according to a senior law enforcement official.

The 40-year-old animal rights lawyer is among the group of “professional outsiders” cast by the New York City police department and mayor as having a significant role in the takeover of Hamilton Hall.

Large, drawn-out protests like the one at Columbia have a tendency to attract people with a diffuse set of ideologies and motivations, experts say. Roughly 30% of those arrested at Hamilton Hall on Tuesday had no affiliation with the school, according to university officials.

But while there is no doubt that the occupation of the building amounted to a dramatic escalation in tactics, it remains unclear how large an influence outsiders like Carlson have had on the overall student protest movement at Columbia and nearby colleges, which began more than two weeks ago.

Some of the student protesters think the narrative pushed by city and university officials — of dangerous outsiders co-opting the demonstrations — is fueled by ulterior motives.

“I really struggle a lot with the whole narrative of outside agitators because I see it as a means through which to justify violence,” Soph Askanse, a junior at the neighboring Barnard College, said in an interview. “And to claim that because individuals are not students, they are thus deserving of police brutality.”

Rory Wilson, 22, a Columbia senior who did not participate in the protests, offered a different take.

After midnight on Tuesday, Wilson and a friend placed themselves outside a Hamilton Hall door for several minutes to prevent the protesters from barricading it shut. Video footage released by the city showed a 63-year-old activist named Lisa Fithian at the center of the action, directing the protesters on how to barricade the doors and referring to Wilson and his friend as “as*holes.”

“She was right in the middle of it, instructing them how to better set up the barricades,” said Wilson, who has Jewish heritage but is not a practicing Jew. “Given that the barricades were a pretty central part of the plan of how to take over Hamilton, I’d expect that she would have been pretty central in the logistics planning.”

New York City Mayor Eric Adams and Columbia University President Minouche Shafik called out the prevalence of outsiders after the protesters seized Hamilton Hall. The police swarmed the building late Tuesday and made a wave of other arrests at Columbia and the nearby City College of New York.

A total of 46 people have been charged with trespassing in connection with the building’s occupation, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

At least 13 of them had no affiliation with the university, a Columbia spokesperson said. The rest included at least 14 Columbia undergraduates, nine graduate students and two employees. Six others were students from affiliated schools, the university spokesman said.

“The numbers shared by the NYPD about arrests made on April 30 reflect the expectations we had regarding the occupation of Hamilton Hall,” said Ben Chang, Columbia’s vice president of communications.

NBC News matched the names in court records with names and affiliations from the Columbia email directory and found roughly the same percentage of people with no ties to the university.

At least eight of those arrested inside Hamilton Hall were above the age of 30, NBC News found, and the two employees appear to be junior researchers working in Columbia University labs.

Overall, of the 112 people arrested at Columbia on Tuesday, 32 had no affiliation with the school, or 29%, according to the mayor’s office and the New York Police Department. Out of the 170 people arrested at the City College of New York, 102 people had no ties to the school, or 60%.

The New York Fire Department said three people suffered minor injuries during the arrests. Two were taken to the hospital and one was treated at the scene.

The outsiders
Carlson, who also goes by Cody Carlson and Cody Tarlson, was the oldest of the protesters arrested inside Hamilton Hall. Neither he nor his lawyer returned requests for comment.

Carlson has been a frequent presence at protests around the city since the start of Israel’s offensive in Gaza following Hamas’ Oct. 7 assault, according to the NYPD official.

He is accused of taking part in a chaotic incident near the Columbia campus during a protest on April 20. As a 22-year-old man carrying an Israeli flag was walking around the demonstration, Carlson yanked the flag out of his hands and took off, police said.

The group of outsiders arrested on Tuesday at the City College of New York included a 32-year-old man who has an extensive history of protest-related arrests dating back to 2012 in California, according to a senior law enforcement official.

The man, Rudy Ralph Martinez, has a criminal record in the New York area that includes charges of disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and obstruction, the official said. The disposition of the cases was not known.

Brian Higgins, former Bergen County police chief and lecturer at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, said large protests often serve as a magnet for a certain kind of person.

“The larger number are going to be those people who are well meaning,” Higgins said. “They have a cause — whether it’s the George Floyd murder or Palestine and Israel. But there are those who use those well meaning people for other purposes.”

“It’s not always nefarious,” he added. “But there are people who make a living off of protests.”


Pro-Palestinian protest at Ole Miss ends in heated confrontation
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A group of pro-Palestinian protesters at the University of Mississippi became surrounded by a larger and rowdy group of counterprotesters Thursday, and had to be escorted into a building by police.

Videos of the protest posted on social media show the larger crowd, of about 200 seemingly mostly white young people, surrounding and shouting down the multi-racial group of between 30 and 60 pro-Palestinian protesters.

Another video showed the counterprotesters singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” to drown out the chants from the pro-Palestinian protesters, while yet another video showed a large crowd of men, including two male students who appear to be white, in American flag overalls, yelling in the direction of a Black female graduate student. In the video, the woman appears to be walking toward the crowd while recording them on her phone.

On the right side of the frame, another man can be seen jumping up and down and appearing to make a noise to simulate an ape. That person has not been identified.

Members of the crowd also chanted, “Lock her up!” as the woman was guided away from the hecklers by police, in a video shared on social media by Rep. Mike Collins, R-Georgia.

The racial elements of the encounter led many observers online to point out Mississippi’s long and storied history of violent racism against Black people. Its senators voted to send all of its Black people back to Africa more than 100 years ago. When the university was ordered by a federal court to admit Black students in 1962, 2,000 white people rioted against the arrival of new student James Meredith.


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04 May 2024, 10:52 am

Kinda figured there might be outside instigators ....and from the events around the Portland BLM protests , where strangers showed up . And suddenly removed leaders of the. protest, Noted by other protestors in Portland Oregon , USA . This all smells fishy .. and would hope somebody might get to the bottom of it .??? Snd figure out responsible parties . That may have been the beyond the actual Protests. :roll:


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04 May 2024, 3:52 pm

After weeks of pro-Palestinian protests on campuses, colleges regroup ahead of commencement ceremonies

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After weeks of pro-Palestinian protests on campuses nationwide leading to more than 2,300 arrests, many universities are now regrouping in preparation for their upcoming commencement ceremonies, with some taking place as early as this weekend.

The University of Michigan, Northeastern, Arizona State and Ohio State are among the schools where protests have occurred and are slated to have graduation ceremonies this weekend. School administrations are issuing warnings that anyone planning on disrupting the ceremonies will be removed from campus, as students at dozens of institutions continue to protest in support of Palestinian human rights.

“Please show respect for everyone who has come to share in the experience,” Arizona State University said on its website. “Individuals who engage in inappropriate or disruptive behavior may be removed from the event.”

Students waved Palestinian flags during Saturday’s commencement at the University of Michigan. Banners in the sky displayed messages such as "DIVEST FROM ISRAEL NOW! FREE PALESTINE!" and "WE STAND WITH ISRAEL JEWISH LIVES MATTER."

In a statement issued following commencement, UMich Assistant Vice President for Public Affairs Colleen Mastony said approximately 75 protesters staged a demonstration at the beginning of the program by walking up to the main aisle and chanting. They were escorted by public safety personnel to the rear of the stadium, where they stayed until commencement ended.

There were no arrests," Mastony said. "Peaceful protests like this have taken place at U-M commencement ceremonies for decades. The university supports free speech and expression, and university leaders are pleased that today’s commencement was such a proud and triumphant moment, worthy of the achievements of our extraordinary graduates."

Administrations are also hiring extra security and screening attendees at venues, The Associated Press reported.

Columbia University, where police cleared a weekslong encampment and the campus' Hamilton Hall, is rethinking its commencement ceremony planned for May 15, according to a source at the university. After a meeting with top university leaders Friday, two members of student government said administrators indicated they are not sure they can hold a commencement ceremony on the main Morningside Heights campus in Manhattan because of security concerns.

The source at the university said the main commencement ceremony was slated to be canceled, but smaller events were still being planned. As of Saturday, it is unclear if final decisions have been made.

The colleges could conceivably revoke the degrees of people who disrupt the ceremonies but from what I can see that would be unprecedented. On rare occasions colleges have revoked degrees for misrepresentation. Political statements at commencement ceremonies are far from unheard of. Often the choice of commencement speaker is a political statement.

I do feel bad for people whose ceremonies will be cancelled, seriously altered or disrupted. As I mentioned in another thread the class of 2024 was the high school 2020 class of COVID lockdowns.

For me it is not the ceremony and the piece of paper called a diploma that matters but the accomplishment they represent. I barely remember my ceremonies and have no memory of walking up onstage and receiving my diplomas. But knowing now what I did not know then that I am autistic the accomplishments they represent mean more to me now.

Now and four years ago personal achievements pale in comparison to so many dying. That said to most people graduation ceremonies are considered major life milestones. By missing out in 2020 they missed out on what most other graduation classes got to experience. That fell under the category of s**t happens. For those that miss out on the same thing again, that is seriously f****d up.


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05 May 2024, 10:16 am

Police Again Clear Pro-Palestinian Encampment at U.S.C.

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The Los Angeles Police Department removed a pro-Palestinian encampment at the University of Southern California early Sunday morning, pushing several dozen people out of the campus gates in the latest crackdown on student protesters there.

The encampment had sprouted up nearly two weeks ago in Alumni Park, a central quad on U.S.C.’s campus in Los Angeles. Shortly after it did, the university called the police to the campus, where they arrested 93 people, but the protest returned soon after. Los Angeles police said on Sunday morning that they had made no arrests while clearing the encampment for the second time.

The university has been in turmoil for several weeks following its decision not to allow its valedictorian, who is Muslim, to speak at graduation. The university cited security concerns, but the valedictorian, Asna Tabassum, said she believed she was being silenced. U.S.C. later canceled its main graduation ceremony altogether, though it will hold a modified celebration this week.

On Sunday, police officers in riot gear entered the campus before dawn, pushing about 25 protesters out of the campus’s metal gates. After the police sweep, the quad was littered with blankets, sweatshirts, coolers, snacks and overturned canopies.

Only a few of the tents were still standing, barricaded by wooden pallets and decorated with messages and Palestinian flags. Signs taped to trees carried messages such as, “every Palestinian has a right to live just like you and I,” and “disclose, divest, defend.”

In recent days, officials had tightened security around the private campus, allowing in only those with a university I.D.

Carol Folt, the U.S.C. president, said in a message to students and others on Friday that “there must be consequences” when people flout campus rules. She said the university had started the disciplinary process for people who had violated laws or campus policies.

Ms. Folt said that although the university valued freedom of expression, the protest had reached a tipping point.

“Free speech and assembly do not include the right to obstruct equal access to campus, damage property, or foment harassment, violence and threats,” Ms. Folt wrote. “Nor is anyone entitled to obstruct the normal functions of our university, including commencement.”

Protesters viewed the police operation on Sunday as an unnecessary escalation.


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06 May 2024, 9:57 am

Columbia cancels universitywide commencement ceremony after weeks of protests on campus

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Columbia will replace its universitywide commencement ceremony on May 15 with "smaller-scale, school-based celebrations," university officials announced Monday, after weeks of pro-Palestinian and counterprotests on campus.

The Ivy League school said the decision was made after discussions with student leaders. Security concerns were a main reason behind the decision, a university official told NBC News.

Our students emphasized that these smaller-scale, school-based celebrations are most meaningful to them and their families," the university said Monday. "They are eager to cross the stage to applause and family pride and hear from their school’s invited guest speakers. As a result, we will focus our resources on those school ceremonies and on keeping them safe, respectful, and running smoothly."

As a result, students will be "honored individually alongside their peers" in the smaller ceremonies. "Class Days" and school ceremonies scheduled at the south lawn of the Morningside campus have also been relocated to Columbia’s Baker Athletics Complex.

Come May 15, graduation ceremonies for the journalism school, college of physicians and surgeons, Barnard College, and the school of arts will take place at different times at different locations, according to a schedule released by Columbia. Other school-based ceremonies will take place throughout next week, as well.


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06 May 2024, 5:41 pm

Ole Miss fraternity expels member who appeared to make ape-like sounds toward Black protester

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A college fraternity at the University of Mississippi, where a member last week jeered a Black woman protester by appearing to make ape-like sounds and gestures, said the man has been expelled from the organization.

NBC News has not independently identified the former member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity, who was a part of a large, rowdy group that surrounded and badgered pro-Palestinian protesters at Ole Miss. But in a statement Sunday, the fraternity said it pinpointed the man captured in a viral video and disassociated itself from him.

“Phi Delta Theta General Headquarters is aware of the video regarding the student protest at the University of Mississippi,” the statement read. “The racist actions in the video were those of an individual and are antithetical to the values of Phi Delta Theta and the Mississippi Alpha chapter. The responsible individual was removed from membership on Friday, May 3.”

Meanwhile, the school said it is launching an investigation into the conduct of at least one student during the counterprotests. Chancellor Glenn F. Boyce sent a letter to students and staff Friday noting that Ole Miss leaders were aware of behaviors that were “offensive, hurtful, and unacceptable, including actions that conveyed hostility and racist overtones” at Thursday’s protest.

“While student privacy laws prohibit us from commenting on any specific student, we have opened one student conduct investigation,” he wrote. “We are working to determine whether more cases are warranted.”


Over 1,000 anti-Israel protesters march toward Met Gala
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Over 1,000 anti-Israel demonstrators with flags and keffiyeh face coverings are marching through Manhattan towards the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where the star-studded Met Gala is in full swing.

A still growing crowd is marching north on Fifth Avenue, blocking traffic before cops warning they could be arrested barricaded the thoroughfare at 79th Street.

The march set out from Hunter College, where the group Within Our Lifetime called for a “Day of Rage” protest to form and then march towards the Met.

Despite setting their sights on the glitzy event — which has long been expected to be the target of demonstrations — cops have managed to divert the crowd into Central Park before blocking the exits, where they remain at a standstill and confused about how to progress.

“This is an exercise in futility at this point. There’s nowhere for them to go,” a cop attempting to corral the crowd was heard telling his partner.

Meeting the protestors as the march set out was a number pro-Israel protestors, who said they’re came out to face off with people for “supporting terrorism.”


Hunter College protests prompt school to go fully remote. Here's what students had to say.
Quote:
Hunter College went fully remote Monday due to the ongoing protests in support of Palestinians.

Because the protests are designed to be on the move, the school's administrators said they were not sure how many demonstrators would gather outside Hunter and for how long.

Monday afternoon, there were around 200 demonstrators at the protest, which started to move north toward the Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art at around 6 p.m.

Earlier, police officers put barricades in place outside Hunter College's entrance on East 68th Street and Lexington Avenue. Starting at 3 p.m. Monday, when the fully remote approach took effect, students exited the campus in a large wave because a decision was made to cancel late afternoon and evening classes.

Hunter College said all security measures that are being taken are out of an abundance of caution. Campus law enforcement told CBS New York it's better to be prepared with too much rather than too little.

Some students confused by switch to fully remote learning
Students said they learned of the change to online learning by email and text. Some said the announcement took them by surprise.

"I didn't even know that the protest was going to be happening today," sophomore Hannah Miller said. "So this is my last class for the day."

"I have a class at 6 p.m. and they basically canceled it and I have an exam next week, so it's preparation for exam," freshman Vilen Kim said. "I spend my time, I spend my money doing everything to get here and pay for the tuition and everything and they just canceled my class for no reason."


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06 May 2024, 9:09 pm

Misslizard wrote:
I never understood hating someone because of what they are, how they look, race or religion, etc…
I can understand hating actions.



^^^^^^ Agrees with above ^^^^^^


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07 May 2024, 3:08 am

The State University College at Purchase has become the first campus in the SUNY System to agree to divest
https://x.com/daetrich/status/1787687473914745152

The school is geared towards the arts, film that type of thing. When I visited a relative there around 1980 I observed same-sex couples holding hands in public at a time at a time when that was very stigmatized. Protesters were rousted and arrested there a few nights ago.


Pro-Palestinian protesters break through barricades to retake MIT encampment

Quote:
Pro-Palestinian protesters that had been blocked by police from accessing an encampment at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Monday broke through fencing, linked arms and encircled tents that remained there, as Columbia University canceled its university-wide commencement ceremony following weeks of demonstrations.

Sam Ihns, a graduate student at MIT studying mechanical engineering and a member of MIT Jews for a Ceasefire, said the group has been at the encampment for the past two weeks and that they were calling for an end to the killing of thousands of people in Gaza.

Protesters also sat in the middle of Massachusetts Avenue, blocking the street temporarily during rush hour in the Boston area. By evening the atmosphere around the MIT protest grew less tense with protesters listening to speeches and joining chants before taking a pizza dinner break.

Police in large part had pulled back from the encampment after offering a more robust presence earlier in the day. An MIT spokesperson said the fencing was breached after the arrival of demonstrators from outside the university and that no arrests had been made by Monday night.

Protesters also sat in the middle of Massachusetts Avenue, blocking the street temporarily during rush hour in the Boston area. By evening the atmosphere around the MIT protest grew less tense with protesters listening to speeches and joining chants before taking a pizza dinner break.

Police in large part had pulled back from the encampment after offering a more robust presence earlier in the day. An MIT spokesperson said the fencing was breached after the arrival of demonstrators from outside the university and that no arrests had been made by Monday night.


This article is an oral recounting of recent events on that campus. It is a very lengthy recounting from a diverse group of people directly involved and affected. I highly recommend you take the time to read it.
Our Campus. Our Crisis - Columbia Daily Spectator in collaboration with New York Magazine


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