On March 4th, campuses across the country erupted in protest as faculty, campus workers, and students joined together to say NO to the attacks on education. On that day, over twenty chapters of Students for a Democratic Society protested on their campuses. At the University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee, protesters were met with tear gas and police violence. 16 members of SDS were arrested, and are still fighting to get the charges dropped. At UCLA, SDS members took part in an occupation of the chancellor’s office. Likewise, at campuses such as Drexel, UI Chicago and Diablo Valley College SDSers participated in and led the fight against cutbacks and layoffs.
Students for a Democratic Society has been fighting back against cuts to education for years, leading struggles on campuses across the country. We believe education is a right, not a privilege. We believe that students should not have to suffer fee and tuition hikes so that top administrators can maintain their six-figure salaries. We believe faculty and campus workers should not be subject to mandatory furloughs to maintain wasteful and unbalanced budgets. We believe that ethnic, women’s and LGBTQ programs are NOT expendable. We say, “chop from the top!”, that cuts should be made to top administrators with bloated salaries. We want student, worker, and faculty control over the university; the Board of Regents should not be in control of our futures and lives. We will not stand by and do nothing while the quality of and access to education is diminished, while our schools are privatized, and while K-12 public schools face similar attacks.
We did not cause the economic crisis. We watched Wall Street get billions of taxpayer bailouts, then post record profits. We see how billions are going to the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. Campus workers should not foot the bill nor should students be forced to drop
out because of spiraling tuition costs they cannot afford. Money should go towards jobs, welfare and education, not wars, military aid and occupations.
Finally, we see the actions that students are taking all over the world, such as the strike at the University of Puerto Rico that began April 21st, and that is still going strong despite repression from riot police. We are inspired by their courage and determination.
SDS is calling on students and youth to join with us as we plan for the National Day of Action on Oct. 7th. This is the day called for by students, faculty, and campus workers in California, where protests against tuition hikes, racism, and the privatization of the UC system schools erupted in
September of 2009, inspiring people across the country and the world. On this day we will say no to the budget cuts that threaten our access and the quality of our education. Campuses will protest, march, rally, strike, walkout or petition to show their support for those across the country and the world fighting to defend education, to send a clear message to administrators, legislators and government that we will not remain silent while education is under attack.
University of California- Los Angeles
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill SDS
Wilbur Wright College SDS
University of Chicago- Illinois SDS
University of Minnesota SDS
University of North Carolina- Asheville SDS
Northern Virginia SDS
University of Oklahoma SDS
James Madison SDS
To add your chapter to the list, contact SDS at firstname.lastname@example.org.