Action – Oct 26 & 27 – SFSU students protest and ‘question’ recruiters, bringing recruitment to a halt
October 27, 2005
Following on the success of yesterday’s rally, students at San Francisco State University returned for the second day of the career fair make it clear that the Marines are not welcome on our campus. Students lined up inside Jack Adams Hall beginning at 11:15 with the purpose of monopolizing the recruiters time. A small number of people stayed outside in Malcolm X plaza at the CAN table collecting petition signatures and directing interested students into to the career fair.
Inside, the Marines had set up a table in the back of the room, instead of by the doors where they had been previously. Anticipating our presence, the administration had already set up a movie-theatre like line so that activists could go up one by one to talk to the Marines. Only students were allowed to go inside the career fair. To enforce this, student IDs had to be surrendered at the door in exchange for a purple wristband. At the height of the 3 1/2 hour protest 30 students were lined up to ask the Marines questions, on topics ranging from the Solomon amendment, to don’t ask don’t tell, to human rights, to sexual harassment, to will I be able to leave, etc. A few students who are veterans also showed up to confront the recruiters particularly on issues pertaining to veterans.
The tone of our action was professional (yes, professional, don’t roll your eyes) and civil. As we walked up into OUR student center we were not allowed to chant, hold signs, hand out literature and could not even “march” up to the career fair. We walked in a single file line, quietly, and made our way to the career fair where the police were already there to defend the unassuming Marines.
After the career fair was ended several campus police officers escorted the recruiters off campus.
Though some students expressed frustration at not being able to confront the recruiters as we had in the past, the day was a success as no one was recruited on our campus today. The tactics we employed today were necessary because of the sanctions that had been placed on Students Against War and the International Socialist Organization following our demonstration last semester. We had no illusions as to which side they were really on as the date that the Marines were coming was constantly being changed. We were forced to work with the administration during the planning of these past two days of actions so that we could continue to organize on our campus in the future.
No One Recruited at SFSU today!
2,000 Dead for an unjust war, we won’t let you recruit one more!
SFSU Students Against War
October 26, 2005
About 200 students at San Francisco State University rallied yesterday to protest military recruitment on our campus. The protest was organized by a coalition of student organizations including Students Against War, MechA, the General Union of Palestinian Students, the College Democrats, VOX (Voices for Sexual Freedom), The International Socialist Organization, and Speak Out.
Speakers spoke about the complicity of the administration in the war and its support of the military, about the tradition of student power and protest on our campus, about the racism that permeates american policy from targeted recruitment of minorities to the practices of the IMF and WTO, among many other things. Aimee Alison of the Oakland Green Party spoke about her experience being recruited, and a current active duty soldier under the condition of anonimity spoke about his opposition to the war. Due to the unfortunate coincidence of the death of the 2,000 soldier in Iraq, Cindy Sheehan was unable to attend as she was in Washington DC.
The rally was held without amplified sound in Malcolm X plaza due to the rules of the university which specify amplified sound is only allowed in the plaza (which is our free speech zone) only between 12 and 2.
The event was covered by the press. View local fox news coverage here.
The recruiters were not on campus due to the coordination of the administration with the Marines. The recruiters are expected instead today. Students plan to attend the job fair and form a line to ask questions and occupy the recruiters time. Our administaration has obviously gone on the defensive due to the actions of students last semester and the actions of students across the country.
SFSU Students Against War
See photos at http://www.traprockpeace.org/can_sfsu_26oct05.html