Update from inside Mrak

Tuesday, November 24, 6:22 p.m.
About 60-70 students are in Mrak now, it’s past “closing hours” and we were asked to leave by an administrator who identified himself as “Bob” at about 5:30. We’ve made a commitment to stay the night. Food, more instruments, and many new voices have arrived to keep this party going, we invite you to join us!

THE DOORS ARE STAYING OPEN.

Last Thursday police locked the doors of Mrak at 5 and no new students were let in after the building was “closed.” We are learning and tonight we’re leaving the doors open all night. It’s time for us to reclaim this space entirely, we’re here for the night and we’re not leaving.

There was rumor that the police had been called about 20 minutes ago but they have yet to show up. Administrators have attempted to pull a few students aside to discuss terms of leaving, staying, etc and have been told that any discussion must take place with the entire group.

More updates to come, for now, dance on UCD!

Tuesday, November 24, 6:38 p.m.

We’re beginning to talk through a potential list of demands.  The pizza’s here, yummmy.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:00 p.m

Janet Gong (Senior Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs) and Lora Jo Bossio (interim assistant vice chancellor for enrollment and academic support services) are attempting to discuss with students our leaving the building.  We have made it clear that we will not be leaving.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:00 p.m

Police here. Attempting to close the doors. Students are keeping the doors open.

Gong and Bossio attempting to distract students with conversation while the doors were getting closed. We noticed and called them out.  Now students are keeping the doors open.

Tuesday, November 24, 7:13 p.m

Discussions of safety.  Students are confronting administration about the brutal treatment of students last week and on other campuses.  We are demanding that all police leave campus before we will have a discussion.  They are asking 10-15 minutes to regroup and then continue to discuss. They want us to come up with a time that we may leave.

“We can’t have a dialogue with you while the police surround the building, that’s not a dialogue, that’s a threat.”

Tuesday, November 24, 7:36 p.m

Distraction and lies! Administrators disappeared upstairs about 15 minutes ago.  Now they’ve been followed by two cops in riot gear.  What are they discussing up there?  We doubt that it’s their commitment to ongoing dialogue.  In preperation for conflict, some students have already sent their bags/ belongings to the co-ops on campus for safe keeping.  Chants of “Whose University” are cut short to practice:

“I do not consent to a search…

… I am going to remain silent and I want to speak to a lawyer.”

Let’s hear it for knowing your rights.

Students commit to refusing to identify their gender so we can’t de divided by the gender they assume we are and to declare we’re vegetarian in solidarity with those who are (last time we were in jail for over 12 hours and those who do not eat meat were not given a food option. Plus a cop threw a sandwich… I’m just sayin’)

Tuesday, November 24, 10:01 PM

Janet has read our list of demands.  Just two of the many: We asked that by tonight the administration issue a public and written apology to the one UCD student who was assaulted by the police here on Thursday, and for written commitment to complete amnesty for those arrested and never pressing charges through judicial affairs for them.

She has returned with a response that is vague as usual (more discussions etc)… the group is discussing for the next 15 minutes what our following actions will be, then Janet will return to OUR response.  Po po is probably still outside :[

Thanks very much to occupy California for continuing these updates on their website for us:

8:09pm – The administration is blocking the bathrooms.

8:37pm – Students are negotiating with 2 administrators and the chief of police. They are demanding an apology from the university for the treatment of one of the students that suffered police brutality last week. The students have been given two choices, either leave now or stay with the doors locked & police 100 yards away (meaning no one new can enter)

8:41pm – The students refuse the offer. The administrators are trying to get out of the room to talk more in secret. The administrators still will not allow students to use the bathrooms

8:44pm – The administration has refused to apologize for any brutality. The police chief has stated that she has only seen one video from that night and has talked to the officers involved, but will not make a real investigation into what happened.

9:13pm – 150 students are committed to staying in the hall. 15+ “peace officers” are outside, but that’s not all of them. The students are keeping the doors open with a bike lock

10:04pm – Students in negotiations off and on, the numbers inside are ~100.

10:56pm – Success. The administration promises to lobby on behalf the charges being dropped. This is, however, only a partial success. We still need the fees dropped!

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8 Comments

Filed under Campuses, Media, News, UC Davis

8 responses to “Update from inside Mrak

  1. Pingback: UC Davis – November 24 «

  2. Anon Aggie

    Has the organizing committee discussed partnering with the UC administration to lobby in Sacramento? I have not yet heard a compelling argument that the Regents have any real options. I know there are football coaches who make megabucks and that there a lot of highly paid administrators and faculty, but how much could really be cut without endangering the system?

    We need to make our case to the State legislature and the people of California, and the administration can help us–let’s stop trashing their offices (re: UCSC).

    • Anon Aggie 2

      This issue does not rest in Sacramento. The regents approved pay raises and bonuses for Execs and administrators in July (despite “financial crisis” & state funding cuts). Now they have decided to pay for their raises with tuition hikes.

      The issue is in our house – the leaders of the UC system have their priorities backwords!

      No fee increase on Students!

      • Anon Aggie

        So, I read about those raises at http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/regents/regmeet/jul09/interimactions.pdf

        There were a lot of doctors and a couple lawyers on that list; it should be no surprise that they are expensive people to employ. There are quite a few Deans, a couple of which are for the largest colleges in the system (UCLA and UCB); and finally some corporate officers.

        Basically they are all positions where there are few qualified people to fill them. I know its tough to accept that they can always find another Assistant Professor IV or Cook Supervisor no matter how much they lower the pay while still maintaining the same quality, but that’s the way the world works. And that’s the direction the regents insist on: maintaining UC quality. That means attracting top talent and continuing construction on new ventures.

        I think most students want the UC quality to remain high as well. I know I do. But how do you maintain the same quality when your income has been cut by $800 million? Do you really believe they have that kind of money stashed away somewhere for some self-serving purpose? Do you really think that every single Regent is in a criminal conspiracy to keep the millions to themselves? That the conspiracy is so pervasive that no accountant within the organization leaks a word of it?

        Keep it simple, please. The state has cut funding to the UC; we must demand it back! The protesters like to talk about the promise of the California Master Plan for Higher Education; the linch pin of that master plan is that the State foots the bill! Let us hold the State to that promise.

  3. Pingback: UC Protests Keep Rolling Along « Student Activism

  4. Patrick

    Way to go! I’m so glad you kept up with demands of keeping the riot police out of this. We gather peacefully, they bring in riot police. What message does that send? The message that has brought us to this point of needed solidarity amongst the atrocities of a lost public service – Education in front of all! Way to go!

  5. dont trust those snakes! SNAKES!!!

  6. Swamped at Home

    Woooo! Keep it up!

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