Letter of Solidarity with those facing charges in Berkeley from a comrade in Davis also facing charges
06/04/2012 Comments Off on Letter of Solidarity with those facing charges in Berkeley from a comrade in Davis also facing charges
The University of California and its police department seems now to have realized that the spectacular violence of pepper spray and batons (not to mention other types of physical violence) do not lessen the intensity of demonstrations but rather increase them. As with the Occupy movement in California, a subtler form of violence has been adopted. Elites add the violence of criminal courts to that of the cops. Now sitting down in front of a bank results in criminal charges that possibly entail eleven years in prison. Even being beaten by a cop is a criminal offense!
The University of California is in crisis as the state of California is in crisis. The United States is in crisis as the world is in crisis. The economy, the global economy, is in crisis. Let us remember what the word crisis means. Crisis comes from the Greek. (Let us today take more from the Greeks!). It is the moment of a medical emergency in which an intervention is decisive, in which the action taken decides the outcome.
So let us reiterate, the University of California is in crisis, and WE ARE INTERVENING! The crisis is the end of an economic era that afforded the possibility, and created the necessity, to fund great social works like the highway system and cheap public education. With the crisis of this economic system, the institutions it brought about become unaffordable relics.
Cheap public education has become unaffordable, as it is paid for with tax revenue collected from the ever declining profit rates of American industry. This problem can only be solved by privatizing education, raising fees, making, as our Chancellor Linda Katehi said, education “more of a private good.” In other words, by eliminating public education itself.
We are adamantly opposed to this so-called solution, which ends the illness by killing the patient. We believe in, and are fighting for, a far more radical solution to this crisis: free, truly public education, something that recognizes the University for what it could be—a place of growth and collaborative learning—rather than what it is being turned into—a place to fool students into massive debt in hopes of joining the class of the exploiters.
It is unsurprising that the exploiting class is oppressing our movement through legal and extra-legal means. It is unsurprising, but it will not necessarily be successful. It is frightening to face these charges. This means that we need solidarity more than ever. We call to our friends in the Bay Area, in Davis, and in other parts of California to show solidarity, both symbolic and material, with all comrades facing charges. We must show that, like physical violence, the courts are ineffective means to suppress resistance.
We call the Yolo County DA and the Alameda County DA to drop the charges.
We call our comrades to continue the fight!