“If there is no struggle, there can be no progress.”
-Frederick Douglass, (quoted by Professor August Nimtz at Thursday’s rally)
On March 4th, 2010, hundreds and hundreds of students, workers and allies rallied across the country in defense of public education. At the University of Minnesota, we marched through the sun-kissed early-spring air, demanding: NO TUITION HIKES, NO LAYOFFS, and NO FURLOUGHS. Students, professors and AFSCME workers spoke out about the injustice of the corporate-style privatization of higher education that continues to make cut-backs on the backs of students and workers. When 250 administrators make over $200,000 a year, when students of color and immigrants remain at stagnant or decreasing levels of admission (there are upwards of 30,000 white students at the U, compared to the just barely 1,000 black students currently enrolled), when administrators try to require that workers take unpaid days off to try to balance the budget, and give graduate student TAs bigger work loads for the same amount of pay, there is a need for protest.
And that we did, in conjunction with dozens of schools across the country participating in the National Day of Action in Defense of Public Education. We took the streets, we chanted like we meant it, and we allowed our bodies to be moved by affect, by the uncompromising joy felt in the harmony of three-hundred atonal voices singing the same cry for justice…..
But this is only the beginning. Stay tuned for the continuation of the struggle……