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Forum Post: CUNY’s freedom is under attack – Stand up, Fight back!

Posted 8 months ago on Nov. 14, 2013, 8:38 p.m. EST by mtinker86 (0)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Via Student Bloc NYC (http://studentblocnyc.org/)

The Fall of 2013 has seen a major wave of repression against social movements at the City University of New York. The administration has stifled free expression and activism on CUNY campuses, while at the same time inviting former director of the CIA and war criminal David Petraeus to teach a class in favor of U.S. imperialism, and allowing the ROTC to return to CUNY campuses. City College unexpectedly shut down the Morales/Shakur Center, a community and organizing space that had been home to a myriad of student groups and the Harlem community. Students who protested the increasing militarization of their school and repression of student voices have been beaten, arrested and suspended, and now two student leaders are being sent to jail on criminal charges instead of being granted due process through City College disciplinary hearings. In addition, the CUNY Board of Trustees is proposing an anti-free expression policy, the “CUNY Policy on Expressive Conduct,” that broadly limits and polices CUNY students’ ability to assemble, speak, and exchange materials without official permission.

We say: ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

Below is a list of upcoming events. Scroll down for more information on how to get involved. • Friday, Nov 15, 4-7pm: “Take Back CUNY!” strategic dialogue and action plan to welcome wider participation. CUNY Graduate Center, basement room C201/C202. • Monday, November 19, 9am: Emergency court support for Khalil and Taffy, two City College students facing criminal charges and jail-time by the NYPD and the District Attorney, Manhattan Criminal Court, 100 Centre Street, Arraignment Part AR1 or AR2. • Monday, Nov 25, 12pm-late: “Crash the CUNY Trustees Wedding” Day of Action, beginning at CUNY Central Offices (42nd St and 3rd Ave), ending at Baruch College (E 25th St and 3rd Ave). • Sign and circulate the petition against the “CUNY Policy on Expressive Conduct”.

“Take Back CUNY!” strategic dialogue and action plan

Date: Friday, November 15th Time: 4pm-7pm Place: CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue at 34th St., Room C201/C202 (basement level)

Join CUNY students, faculty, staff, and community in a strategic dialogue and action plan to resist: • militarization of CUNY with Petraeus, ROTC, research, and recruitment • theft of student & community spaces like the Morales/Shakur Center • repression of activism and dissent through the CUNY Board of Trustees “Policy on Expressive Conduct” and arrests/suspensions/jail-time of CUNY student organizers • turning colleges into corporations • labor exploitation confirmed speakers: Sharmin Hossain (Ya-Ya Network), Luis Henriquez (Revolutionary Students Coordinating Committee), Glenn Petersen (Professional Staff Congress – Baruch College), Renate Bridenthal (Professional Staff Congress – International Committee)

co-sponsored by Adjunct Project, Free University, New York Students Rising, PSC-CUNY International Committee, CCNY Students for Educational Rights, Revolutionary Students Coordinating Committee, and the Ya-Ya Network.

Contact FreeUniversityNYC@gmail.com for more info. RSVP here: https://www.facebook.com/events/599359933458885/

City-College-students-march-through-Hmilton-Heights-in-Harlem-to-protest-closure-of-Morales-Shakur-Center-by-Jeff-Mays

Emergency Court Support for City College students forced to spend a day in jail on criminal charges by NYPD and District Attorney

Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2013 Time: 9AM SHARP Place: Manhattan Criminal Court, 100 Centre Street, Arraignment Part AR1 or AR2

Earlier this week, Tafadar “Taffy” Sourov and Khalil Vasquez, two student leaders suspended without a hearing by CCNY, were ordered by the New York State Police and the New York County District Attorney’s office to present themselves downtown to be arrested. They were told that criminal charges would be filed against them, as a result of three-week-old allegations against them from the October 24 demonstration at CCNY to save the Morales/Shakur Center.

Preempting its own student disciplinary process, which has yet to run its course for Taffy and Khalil, CUNY brought in the cops and the District Attorney to punish these two student activists. This represents a heightening of collaboration that is without precedent between CUNY and the cops, between the University and the Repressive State. This is an attack on the Revolutionary Student Coordinating Committee (RSCC), Taffy and Khalil’s organization, which has been among the forefront of the CUNY movement.

More than any other recent event, this embodies the entire trend in CUNY towards increasing repression and militarization. The CUNY administration is overtly collaborating with the criminal legal system to punish student protesters. The CUNY administration is planning for a future where not only student protesters will be suspended, they will be arrested and given criminal charges as well. Our student leaders, the CUNY movement, and the University must be defended against this repression. On Monday, November 18, Taffy and Khalil will present themselves at the District Attorney’s office to be arrested and held in jail for 24 hours. On Tuesday, November 19, they will see a judge for their first court appearance. Students, faculty, and community must turn out from throughout CUNY and New York City to stand with these students in court.

“Crash the CUNY Trustees Wedding” – ALL-OUT NYC MOVEMENTS MOBILIZATION The people of CUNY invite you to crash the Wedding between the CUNY administration and militarism/anti-free expression! Date: Monday, November 25

Events schedule: 12:00pm – NYC students solidarity walkout 01:30pm – Press Conference at CUNY Central Offices (42nd St & 3rd Ave, Manhattan). 02:00pm – Wedding Procession down 3rd Ave to Baruch College. 03:00pm - outside: Wedding Ceremony between CUNY administration and militarism/anti-free expression outside Baruch Vertical Campus building (E 25th St between Lexington and 3rd Ave). We encourage you to “crash” the ceremony by speaking out (or forever hold your peace). Music and dancing outside will follow. 04:00pm – CUNY Board of Trustees Business Meeting, 14th floor. Evening Wedding Reception – to be announced

Email harlemuniversitystudentunion@gmail.com to get involved.

Text @crashcunywedding to 23559 for updates RSVP here: https://www.facebook.com/events/195672517284808

CUNY against ROTC

Petition Sign and circulate the petition against the “CUNY Policy on Expressive Conduct”: https://www.change.org/petitions/the-cuny-board-of-trustees-and-cuny-college-administrators-dismiss-the-proposed-cuny-policy-on-expressive-activity

News articles/resources Protesting the hiring of David Petraeus as faculty: http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2013/09/cuny_students_arrested.php http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/20/cuny-david-petraeus-protests-arrests-youtube

Protesting the closing of the Morales/Shakur Center: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/22/nyregion/protests-as-city-college-closes-a-student-center.html http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2013/10/cuny_morales-shakur_guillermo_moralesassata_shakur_student_and_community_center_david_petraeus.php

Suspension of student activists and proposal of “CUNY Policy of Expressive Conduct:” http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2013/10/ccny_students_suspended_third_protest_khalil_vasquez_tafadar_sourov.php http://thepeoplesvoicenewspaper.tumblr.com/post/65502193699/cuny-campus-security-suspend-and-detain-ccny-students http://amsterdamnews.com/news/2013/nov/07/cuny-proposes-limits-expressive-activity-suspends-/

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