Workers Vanguard No. 992
9 December 2011
Brutal CUNY Cop Attack on Tuition Protesters
On November 21, hundreds of City University of New York (CUNY) students marched to Baruch College to protest a proposed tuition hike at a Board of Trustees public meeting. In retaliation, campus administrators unleashed their cop thugs on students, who were roughed up and arrested. Pleading poverty as the state and city governments have slashed education and social services to the bone while gouging public workers, the Trustees approved the hike on November 28. The heavily black and Latino CUNY student population—mostly from working-class families and already thousands of dollars in debt—will now be made to pay further for the economic downturn, making it even more difficult to continue their studies.
At a feeder demonstration on CUNY’s City College campus ahead of the November 21 meeting, Spartacus Youth Club comrades led chants of “Free quality education! Abolish the administration!” The money and resources exist to provide quality education for all. But getting our hands on the wealth of society requires breaking the power of the bourgeoisie through workers revolution. Addressing the crowd, an SYC speaker pointed the way forward: “Students must ally with the working class in fighting against the capitalist system.”
We print below a November 29 letter from the New York SYC to Chancellor Matthew Goldstein protesting the police repression.
* * *
The Spartacus Youth Club denounces the arrests of at least fifteen protesters at Baruch College on Monday, November 21. Campus police—acting under the oversight of a university administrator—prevented hundreds of students from attending a public hearing before the CUNY Board of Trustees on a proposed $300/year tuition hike. The university administration’s claim that the protesters “surged forward” was exposed as a brazen lie by video footage that showed the police unleashing a sudden baton attack against dozens trapped in the Baruch College lobby.
The actions of the CUNY cops, similar to recent cop attacks at UC Davis and elsewhere, are unmistakable acts of intimidation meant to silence student protest against the administration’s campaign for tuition increases. This repression coincides with a wave of brutal police attacks and mass arrests targeting Occupy protesters around the country.
At least five protesters are facing charges including criminal trespass, attempted grand larceny and resisting arrest. On November 28, three more protesters were arrested at Baruch College while the Board of Trustees met and approved the tuition hike. The Spartacus Youth Club demands that all the charges against these protesters be dropped immediately, and that no further actions, including suspensions and expulsions, be taken against them!