When asked what she thought about students’ May 4th resistance, Emma Kaplan of World Can’t Wait remarked, “I think the May 4th resistance should be the beginning of putting the government on notice, to send it the message that With or Without You, We Will Stop These Wars. Students need to be part of a sustained movement of protest that doesn’t back down, give up, or go away until the powers that be are forced to respond.” As a national student coordinator Kaplan observes that “there are some students who are unsatisfied with the world as it is, recognizing that the things they would like to change could never be changed with Obama as president. At the same time, many students have also started to accept crimes under Obama that they would have opposed under Bush."
Some students are beginning to take action into their own hands rather than depending on presidents and politicians. We Are Change, a decentralized peace movement with many student members, has recently come to something of a forefront in this new breed of student activism. “It’s up to this generation to carry the anti-establishment spirit of the 60’s and 70’s to new heights,” said one member. “This is the same establishment that dropped atomic bombs and agent orange on unsuspecting women and children, it is the same establishment that now murders innocents in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Voting in a new front man for the establishment is clearly not going to change anything." Another member added, "I’ve found that many students are on the lookout for fearmongering or manufactured crises that could be used by the state to lure us into a war with Iran. Today’s students also have the advantage of open communication online, where one person’s activism could reach thousands without being spun by mainstream media outlets."
Noor Aljawad, a first year Sociology and Middle East Studies major who plans to join students on the 4th, believes that one of the changes Obama made was to expand Bush’s wars. “There is little difference in the foreign policy of democrats and republicans. Like Bush, Obama is a corporatist acting in the interests of oligarchical financiers. May 4th should be a message to Obama that our dissent is going to continue until these imperialistic wars are ended.”
Whether it’s escalating the wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan, continuing the criminal occupation of Iraq, or working toward an attack on Iran — many students have had enough with George W. Obama’s warmongering. May 4th, 2010 marks the 40th anniversary of the Kent State massacre, when 13 unarmed students were gunned down by the national guard for protesting the Vietnam war. In remembrance of them, we fight on.
This effort is being supported by:
Alan Canfora, Alliance of the Libertarian Left, Angela Keaton, Antiwar.com, Campus Antiwar Network, Cindy Sheehan, Copblock.org, Cop Watch Los Angeles, Diversity of Thought UCSB, James Cox, Mariana Evica, May4.org, SB Anti-War, Students for Justice in Palestine, Students for Liberty, Students for a Voluntary Society, The Love Police, The Peace, Freedom, and Prosperity Movement, Tom Ender, UC Strike, We Are Change, World Can’t Wait.