University president refuses to accept list of demands from protesters
Activists run home when threatened with arrest and expulsion
School administrators allowed to return to work
A senior administrator shut down a sit-in at the University of Ohio last week. The disruption was caused by a group of students attempting to occupy an area outside of university President Michael V. Drake’s office in Bricker Hall. Students marched on the building demanding that President Drake address their list of demands. The protest was shut down shortly after it started, when the students were threatened with consequences for their actions.
The group marched on the building at 3:30 PM with the intention of forcing the president to listen to a full list of their ridiculous demands. A few gems from the list include:
- We demand complete, comprehensive and detailed access to the Ohio State budget and investments immediately, as well as personnel to aid students in understanding this information.
- OSU Divest: Divest from Caterpillar Inc., Hewlett Packard and G4Sdue to their involvement in well-documented human rights abuses in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and across the globe. . .
- Updates to investments and/or the budget must be publicly stated, publicly available, and provide qualified personnel to aid in understanding these changes and make the information fully accessible to all students, faculty, and staff.
To the surprise of the student protesters, their demands were not met. Drake even went as far as refusing to listen to or accept of list of demands from the disruptive students. In a statement delivered by Ohio State Vice President Jay Kasey shattered the groups “safe space” with cold, hard truth.
“Dr. Drake will never receive a list of demands and he will not negotiate with you…If you refuse to leave, then you will be charged with a student code of conduct violation…If you are here at 5:00 a.m. we will clear the building and you will be arrested. We will give you the opportunity to go to jail for your beliefs.”
This dose of reality was too much for the students to handle. After a brief dialogue between Kasey and the students it was clear that anyone remaining in the building would be held accountable for the sit-in and deal with the ramifications of disrupting the school’s administrative staff who use the building as a work space. The building was completely cleared of protesters by 1:00 AM, less than 12 hours after the sit-in began. According to posts made on the Afrikan Black Coalition Blog, police were preventing food from being delivered to participants of the sit-in, which caused a majority of the activists to clear out by dinner time.
How would you have handled this situation if you were the president of Ohio State? Sound off in the comment section below!