Sunday, November 20, 2011

UC-Davis Students Embody Nonviolent Revolution

On Thursday, November 18th, Lieutenant John Pike of the UC-Davis Campus Police made the choice to pepper spray several nonviolent protestors on the UC-Davis Campus. As you can see, the response to this action by those who observed it was immediate and emphatic, but remained nonviolent, finally culminating with the growing group of people chanting, "You can leave! You can leave!", to which the security forces oblige.

Many have called for the resignation of UC-Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi for authorizing the clearing out of the protestors without a real understanding of how the orders would be carried out. Katehi has herself called the actions "chilling".

Then, on Friday, as the blog Second Alarm recalls:

A pretty remarkable thing just happened. A press conference, scheduled for *4:00pm* between the UC Davis Chancellor and police with local press on campus, did not end in an hour, as planned. Instead, a mass of Occupy Davis students and sympathizers mobilized outside, demanding to have their voice heard. After some initial confusion, UC Chancellor Linda Katehi refused to leave the building, attempting to give the media the impression that the students were somehow holding her hostage.

A group of highly organized students formed a large gap for the chancellor to leave. They chanted “we are peaceful” and “just walk home,” but nothing changed for several hours. Eventually student representatives convinced the chancellor to leave after telling their fellow students to sit down and lock arms (around 7:00pm).

Read Xeni Jardin's eyewitness account.

These have instantly become powerful moments in American history showing clearly how effective nonviolent protests can be by shedding light on how (and how not) to treat each other and resolve our differences.

UPDATE: Katehi apologizes

Thanks to the students of UC-Davis who have participated in these actions of nonviolent protest, whether standing up and chanting or sitting in silence, your actions are being felt far and wide! Thank you for your example and your active part in the Nonviolent Revolution!

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