Campus administrators send out message responding to Occupy Cal demonstrations

Read the text of the CALmessage sent by Chancellor Robert Birgeneau and other administrators to the UC Berkeley community regarding Wednesday’s events and Occupy Cal: 

To the Extended UC Berkeley Community:

As you know, yesterday an effort was made to establish an encampment on Sproul Plaza, by the “Occupy Cal” movement. This followed and marred the aftermath of an impressive, peaceful noontime rally on Sproul on behalf of public education, which was attended by some 3,000 participants and observers, including many campus leaders. We compliment the organizers and speakers for setting an example of peaceful protest and mobilization. As we informed the campus community earlier this week, we understand and share the concern of the Occupy movement about the extreme concentration of wealth in US society and the steady disinvestment in public higher education by California and other States.

We want to clarify our position on “no encampments” so you better understand why we do not allow this to occur on our campus. When the no-encampment policy was enacted, it was born out of past experiences that grew beyond our control and ability to manage safely. Past experiences at UC Berkeley, along with the present struggles with entrenched encampments in Oakland, San Francisco, and New York City, led us to conclude that we must uphold our policy.

This decision is largely governed by practical, not philosophical, considerations. We are not equipped to manage the hygiene, safety, space, and conflict issues that emerge when an encampment takes hold and the more intransigent individuals gain control. Our intention in sending out our message early was to alert everyone that these activities would not be permitted. We regret that, in spite of forewarnings, we encountered a situation where, to uphold our policy, we were required to forcibly remove tents and arrest people.

We want to thank our student leaders, faculty, and community members who worked hard to maintain a peaceful context last night. We have been in discussions with the ASUC, Graduate Assembly, and other student leaders who have provided a number of alternative proposals for working with the student protesters. One such discussion led last night to our offering protesters the opportunity to use Sproul Plaza 24/7 for one week, as a venue for gathering and discussing the issues. However, we stipulated that no tents, stoves, and sleeping bags would be allowed. They could gather in Sproul for discussion, but not for sleeping. This was rejected by a vote of the mass of the protesters.

It is unfortunate that some protesters chose to obstruct the police by linking arms and forming a human chain to prevent the police from gaining access to the tents. This is not non-violent civil disobedience. By contrast, some of the protesters chose to be arrested peacefully; they were told to leave their tents, informed that they would be arrested if they did not, and indicated their intention to be arrested. They did not resist arrest or try physically to obstruct the police officers’ efforts to remove the tent. These protesters were acting in the tradition of peaceful civil disobedience, and we honor them.

We regret that, given the instruction to take down tents and prevent encampment, the police were forced to use their batons to enforce the policy. We regret all injuries, to protesters and police, that resulted from this effort. The campus’s Police Review Board will ultimately determine whether police used excessive force under the circumstances.

We call on the protesters to observe campus policy or, if they choose to defy the policy, to engage in truly non-violent civil disobedience and to accept the consequences of their decisions.

We ask supporters of the Occupy movement to consider the interests of the broader community—the tens of thousands who elected not to participate in yesterday’s events. We urge you to consider the fact that there are so many time-tested ways to have your voices heard without violating the one condition we have asked you to abide by.

Robert J. Birgeneau, Chancellor
George Breslauer, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost
Harry Le Grande, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs

Please keep our community civil. Comments should remain on topic and be respectful.
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  • T.K.

    I also “regret…” that “the police were FORCED to use their batons”

    I regret even more that you, Mr. Birgeneau would defend the actions of these officers.   Your claim that linking arms is not non-violent disobedience is very regrettable.  The police who committed these acts should be charged and prosecuted for assault. 

    Mr. Birgeneau,

    I actually agree with some of your position, and agree that as a “practical” matter people should not be allowed to set up a permanent camp on Sproul Plaza, but my agreement on this matter is a trivial point.  The force that was used in this situation was inexcusable.  The police could have (and should have) obtained their objective in a non-violent manner.  I wonder if you were there (instead of the police) if you would have started beating people?  Because this is what you are defending. 

    I think the police could have achieved their objective in many ways without the use of violence.  It may have taken more time, but this was a non-urgent, non-threatening situation.  The impatient police were beating people (essentially) for wasting their time.  They easily could have just began arresting people who were linking arms one-by-one.  They could have created their own line and gently, but forcefully pushed their way through the crowd.  They could have waited until late in the evening when most of the protestors had gone home.  They could have done, many, many things without resorting to violence. 

    Please reconsider your position on this issue, weather you agree with the actions of the protestors or not, the violence of these officers is not an acceptable response to a non-violent protest.  We are very lucky these protestors remained non-violent in the face of the egregious actions of these officers.  For that, if nothing else, we should be commending these protestors.  The officers actions could have easily escalated this situation into a full blown riot if cooler heads (those of the students) had not prevailed.  Not only is the position you are taking wrong, it is dangerous, both for the well being of the officers and to the students whom they are sworn to PROTECT. 

    It is sad when the a protesting mob exhibit cooler (collective) heads, than an “organized” police force.  And even sadder when their heads are cooler than a UC Chancellor who has had the extra benefit of time to sit and consider his position, and still come to a very non-cool headed conclusion. 

    T.K. (PhD, from Berkeley)

  • Anonymous

    I agree. Holding arms is not an act of violence. Beating people with batons? is an act of violence. This issue with Occupyers, has come down to they just want to show people who the boss is, nothing else.

  • Eugene May

    The Birgeneauese to English Dictionary, Berkeley: Private-City of California Press, 2011. 

    Preface: 
    We are aware that it is getting increasingly difficult for the commoners that are the students to understand the always sublime and insightful speeches or letters of our Democratic Chancellor, Robert Birgenau, the guy who is the single heir to the principles of the Cal tradition. To foreclose any problems in future communication we publish this dictionary.

    Nonviolence: 1. Any type of police conduct. 2. Any type of euology to police conduct. 

    Peaceful demonstrator: 1. A student who is kind enough to beat herself as a favor to the police officer. 2. A student who destroys all tents in sight as a favor to the police officer. 3. A student who begs the police officer for being arrested and is grateful from heart if she succeeds.

    Violent protestor: 1. All existing student-bodies who do not beat themselves when facing a police officer. 2. All existing student-bodies who do not destroy tents in sight as a favor to the police officer. 3. Any student body who seduces the police officer into using his baton against them. Ex: “It is unfortunate that some protesters chose to obstruct the police by linking arms and forming a human chain to prevent the police from gaining access to the tents.  This is not non-violent civil disobedience.”
    Colloquial: A Student

    Democracy: see Normocracy

    Destructive action: Ex: ”pulling fire alarms, occupying buildings, setting up encampments, graffiti, or other destructive actions that disrupt or interfere with anyone’s ability to conduct regular activities.” Any activity  that is not non-destructive. (see non-destructive activity).

    Non-destructive activity: Regular activity that conforms to the principles of business-as-usual. Prime example: paying tuition fees and being so happy about it to declare one’s desire to pay more and more. Secondary examples: sleeping, going to classes, going directly home after the classes, sleeping.

    Injury: The bodily state of a police officer who gets tired from beating students. Ex: “We regret all injuries, to protesters and police, that resulted from this effort.”

    Free Speech: The laissez-faire form of speech. See Free Speech Movement
    Free Speech Movement: The speech of those with enough capital circulating freely on the globe without being hindered by archaic borders called the Truth. Ex: “As the birthplace of the free speech movement, we hold an important place in history” 

    All quotations are from the letters of Robert Birgeneau. Note: In consideration of their literary value, Private-City Press will publish this year “The Collected Letters of Robert Birgeneau, Vol.1: MESSAGE TO CAMPUS COMMUNITY” 

  • Jbengston

    Reflecting on the events of the past week, the firing of Joe Paterno and the outrageous actions of the UC police against the student protest on Sproul Plaza:   Chancellor Birgeneau’s characterization of the student action of linking arms to as “not nonviolent” thereby sanctioning the actions of his police force to brutally attack the students is akin to Joe Paterno’s actions (or inaction), which in both cases were to put the perceived interests of the institution (and these “administrators” own reputations) above the interests of individual human beings. In the Paterno case, clearly he held these children in some form of contempt as lesser beings not entitled to the outrage and protection of society. (Being an old man of 84 is no excuse, laws and ethics require adults in positions of authority protect children from abuse: doctors, lawyers, teachers, coaches. Clearly he thought the child’s (children’s) lives were disposable in contrast to his and his institutions reputation(how do you defend the hiring and retention of a known child molester…you don’t, so you don’t acknowledge it). 
    How is this akin to Birgeneau’s actions in defending the brutality of his police force? As chancellor of the university he is ultimately responsible for the actions of the university and its employees. In 2011, it is inconceivable to me that the public safety officers on campus are not trained in nonviolent crowd management. The video of these officers brutally jabbing the ends of their billy clubs into the students who in no way physically provoke or defend themselves, is evidence that Birgeneau cannot dispute. To claim that linking arms is not nonviolent is to attempt an indefensible rhetoric for an indefensible act. He needs to step down, as does the head of public safety. There is no excuse for this police brutality. 
    Do these comments then support violent behavior by protesters…absolutely not.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_HQFPJLHB27IYRSOOCFEREX7CFQ Peter H

         As you know . . . The UC Berkeley administrators are dedicated to making a cushy living, off the backs of both the privileged and under-privileged members of the student body.

    If we allowed SOME of you to protest the ever-increasing tuition hikes – and subsequent ‘crippling debt’ said tuition increased thrusts upon you – then before long MOST of the students would begin to engage in civil dissent.  Which we can not abide.

    Look . . . the administration cares about ‘getting PAID’.  Most of us drive either a Mercedes or a BMW.  Fancy cars and apartments for our mistresses, don’t just pay for themselves. DUH!!

    So suck it up, students.  You have no rights.  You have no say in the workings of a public University.  If those at OccupyCAL do not acquiesce to UCB policy, we will be FORCED to beat the bejesus out of you again.

           Fuck you,

           Chancellor Robert J. “no balls” Birgeneau

  • Donatenot

    This is an incredibly disappointing response from the Chancellor. There is simply no way that the actions of the PD can be justified. That an academic leader would try to justify this insanity shows how much trouble the US is really in. As a parent of a current Cal student, I would like Mr. Birgeneau to take note of two things. First, as a member of the “1%”, I have been providing added financial support to Cal that I will now stop completely. And second, in the event that my child is injured by such criminal acts on the part of the UCPD, I will hold all parties accountable to the maximum extent of my reach.

  • jojo

    Why did Birgeneau even bother writing this? What did it accomplish? Even if he’s not going to ever denounce
    the horrible actions of the cops, why go out of your way to justify it,
    by re-inventing the definition of violence? How cowardly and ineffective
    is that? Why should we ever trust his leadership again?

  • Yvette Winton

    Chancellor Birgeneau: Your decision to use force this week has brought Sproul Hall one step closer to 1989 Tiananmen square.  It is reasonable to arrest students who blocked the way, it is unjustifiable to beat students up with batons.   

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

      In case you didn’t know, people were actually killed at Tienanmen, and it wasn’t about whining over the cost college tuition. You’re an embarrassment…

      • UC Irvine guy

        Tony M please read carefully — she said “one step closer” — not “equals”.

        Please consider: You’re not helping yourself or others by calling their actions “whining”: that only lowers the discussion to the point where none of can make progress.

        Please also consider what the original mandate of public universities was, what the intended benefits were, and what we are giving up by abandoning their funding (forcing them to turn into private universities only for the priviledged.  They are not just protesting their own tuition.  They are protesting the almost unfathomable total cost to society of ignorance — an ignorance coming out of the vacuum of a non-existent public education.  We are already seeing that cost over the last 50 years as public universities have been privatized.  We make poorer and poorer decisions as a society because we are to a larger and larger degree uneducated.  Those poor decisions become compounded and no one can remember where the first one was made.  We dig ourselves deeper and deeper into a rut, and can’t figure out how to get out, because we are uneducated and unwise.  Please don’t blame someone who sees this — and protests it.

  • Guest

    http://police.berkeley.edu/about_UCPD/code-ethics.html

    Here is the UCPD code of ethics taken by each officer.   They certainly put the “property rights” ahead of the “human rights” in this particular situation.  I’ve bolded the pertinent part of the mission statement.

    As a Law Enforcement Officer, my fundamental duty is to serve mankind; to safeguard lives and property; to protect the innocent against deception, the weak against oppression or intimidation, and the peaceful against violence or disorder; and to respect the Constitutional rights of all men to liberty, equality and justice.

    I will keep my private life unsullied as an example to all; maintain courageous calm in the face of danger, scorn, or ridicule; develop self-restraint; and be constantly mindful of the welfare of others. Honest in thought and deed in both my personal and official life, I will be exemplary in obeying the laws of the land and the regulations of my department. Whatever I see or hear of a confidential nature or that is confided to me in my official capacity will be kept ever secret unless revelation is necessary in the performance of my duty.

    I will never act officiously or permit personal feelings, prejudices, animosities or friendships to influence my decisions. With no compromise for crime and with relentless prosecution of criminals, I will enforce the law courteously and appropriately without fear or favor, malice or ill will, never employing unnecessary force or violence and never accepting gratuities.

    I recognize the badge of my office as a symbol of public faith, and I accept it as a public trust to be held as long as I am true to the ethics of the police service. I will constantly strive to achieve these objectives and ideals, dedicating myself before God to my chosen profession…law enforcement.

    Additionally, here is the homepage of the City of Berkeley — I’ve bolded the pertinent part of the mission statement of the City.

    “Berkeley is a city with a small population and a big reputation. In California alone, there are more than 30 cities bigger than Berkeley. In Alameda County, Berkeley is ranked fourth in population behind Oakland, Fremont, and Hayward. And yet, we are famous around the globe as a center for academic achievement, scientific exploration, free speech and the arts.”

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jeff-Rudisill/708524595 Jeff Rudisill

      As I read the UCPD code of ethics, I could see the police line, batons at the ready, confronting the locked arms of the occupiers, arms locked, and, using the People’s Mic, reading this code to the police on the line. What a powerful statement.

  • Dustin Preisler

    Chancellor Robert Birgeneau, you are dead wrong about linking arms being a violent act.  People are quite vocally disagreeing with your blatant disregard for the definition of violence.   As another comment so eloquently put it, “Every single person who has seen the videos has already made his or her own determination.  And everyone I have spoken to–regardless of their feelings about the Occupy movement–believes that this was a disgusting display of police brutality.”  I emailed both the mayor of the City and the UC Police Department about their urgent need for a PR representative to help them understand the new age of instant communication & omnipresent video, but I must say, you are off to a pretty terrible start.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Q2QSZRHK3JIZT4VQP24BKXO6NE George

    a

  • Five Oh Needs 5150d

    “Police detained 39 people, including a junior professor in the English
    department. Upon release, the professor reported that police told her
    the university chancellor had told university police to keep arrestees’
    personal property – including her lecture notes – from them for 5 days.”
    http://howtheuniversityworks.com/wordpress/archives/300

    What’s this about, Mr. Bob Birgeneau?
    Either their personal property was evidence to be used in an investigation, and would have been taken in as such at the time of arrest, or its not evidence and is to be returned to persons upon their release from custody.

    UCPD pretends to be law enforcement, but instead is told by the Chancellor to mete out petty punishments to persons neither convicted nor sentenced.
    Strange stuff, given that UC just got slapped with suit in federal court charging violation of rights during the clearing out of protestors from campus.

    The campus administration and its police force posse a clear threat to the “campus community”.

  • RealEyes Realize ReaLies

    “… followed and marred the aftermath of an impressive… ”
    The aftermath is that which follows. “Aftermath” carries with it the implication of disaster, not of some impressive fete.
    Based on the turgid, nearly nonsensical prose, one assumes the administration is writing satire today.

    UC’s Police Review Board? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.
    Can’t take that seriously after it took the PRB seven months to investigate Wheeler, conclude that they screwed that one up, and yet hold no one responsible. Then they stalled and stonewalled for months so they could try to bury the report by releasing it when the students were on summer break.

    “interests of the broader community”
    stop, it’s just too funny, you’re killing me!
    The broader interests are exactly what UC couldn’t give a crap about.
    http://spot.us/pitches/337-investors-club-how-the-uc-regents-spin-public-funds-into-private-profit/story
    http://www.sfbg.com/2011/09/27/censorship-or-something-else
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  • Adam Duker

    Dear Chancellor Birgeneau,

    You are mistaken in your statement that the “campus’s Police Review Board will ultimately determine whether police used excessive force under the circumstances.”  Every single person who has seen the videos has already made his or her own determination.  And everyone I have spoken to–regardless of their feelings about the Occupy movement–believes that this was a disgusting display of police brutality.

    Each and every one of those officers who hit defenseless students needs to be fired and placed under arrest.  If you ordered the use of excessive and brutal tactics, you should resign immediately.

    I am not a member of the Occupy movement.  But the tactics employed by the UC Police against the student cannot be allowed at a public university.

    I have no idea how you can justify allowing complete outsiders to live in trees for several years before gently placing them under arrest, but you allow your own students to be beaten with batons for standing next to each other.  I have lost all confidence in your leadership.  Your poor judgment and foresight has led to officers smashing the rib cages of defenseless students. 

  • None

    We are the consequence of our decisions.  This we accept.

    Police repression of the camp is the consequence of your decisions.  This we do not accept.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_J6IDNMWOBPC7IQMNCLET7DYITA pepper

    So, this is how the greatest public University in America “teaches” it’s students?  Birgeneau and his Bad Boy thugs get an “F” for their response.  Birgeneau’s approach indicates a dearth of ideas (=once again, we are talking about the #1 public UNIVERSITY) on his part.  Perhaps it is time for someone else to take over his responsibilities, because his actions (=via his police force) showed irresponsibility.  He GAVE UP on his constituency–his students!

    • You Are An Idiot

      The students were told not to set up tents.
      If they’re too fucking stupid to follow basic instructions, maybe they don’t belong at Cal!

      • Anonymous

        African American people were told not sit everywhere in the bus too.  If everyone followed basic instructions and not fight for what they believe, how would US be different than Saudi Arabia now? (oh yeah, we don’t have the $$ like the Saudis)

        • Anonymous

           Rioters were told not to loot any stores after the Rodney King trial.  I guess rules are just made to be broken.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jeff-Rudisill/708524595 Jeff Rudisill

            So you’re equating looting with setting up tents in a public area? Where did you take logic? Or is this a case where your political opinions outweigh logic?

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

          African American people were told not sit everywhere in the bus too.

          You’re clearly too stupid to tell the difference between an arbitrary rule whose enforcement was based on race, and a legal order from a police officer that was based on behavior. Sorry you missed the 1960′s – get over it and grow up.

  • Guest

    The Occupy movement has failed.  The world is now focused on their
    (alleged?) bad behavior and not on their issue.  The world is praising
    the authorities and condemning the protesters.  (Remember, the world is
    not defined by the insular and segregated Bay Area, let alone Berkeley.)

    Those
    who refused to sit at the back of the bus, those who sat down at the
    lunch counter, those who lay across the railroad tracks, made the world
    sit up and notice (and change).  They all got arrested but what the
    world remembers is their important cause because they accepted the
    consequences of their actions, instead of defying the police.  The world
    praised the protesters and condemned the authority.

    Occupiers
    got it backwards, and the banks are laughing . . . wait for it . . . all
    the way to the bank . . . because the focus is no longer on them as it
    should be.

    The Occupy movement has failed. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jeff-Rudisill/708524595 Jeff Rudisill

      In your dreams, you who are too cowardly to identify yourself.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

        Spoken like a true geriatric hippie holdover from the 1960′s…

  • Over it

    absolute bullshit. In what world is linking arms a violent act? Civil Disobedience is disobeying campus policy idiot

  • GoldenBear’83

    What makes these students think they can actively block/disobey orders from the police and not face the consequences?? Linking arms and blocking the police from doing their job is not “civil” or legal…I do wish the police were more aggressive with the tree-sitters back in the day…

    • Joseph

      Look up what civil disobedience means before you open your mouth.  No shit it isn’t legal.  That doesn’t mean it isn’t civil.  And that doesn’t mean the police can begin beating people with batons.  

  • http://gagaism.org Jarraxe

    “It is unfortunate that some protesters chose to obstruct the police by linking arms and forming a human chain to prevent the police from gaining access to the tents. This is not non-violent civil disobedience.” Please tell me you are not in charge of educating our youth. Linking arms is entirely non-violent. BEATING people with steel batons is not.

  • Elizabeth ( CAL alum)

    This letter of “response” is wholly inadequate. As a UC alum, I call for the resignation of Chancellor Birgeneau. Contact Governor Jerry Brown (also a CAL alum) if you agree; tell him Chancellor Birgeneau must go. Contact Governor Brown at: http://gov.ca.gov/m_contact.php

    • Dfsadfa

      Is he by chance any kin to Gordon Brown of England?

  • L. Kennedy

    I just want to apologize for my remark about Chancellor Denton, it was unnecessary and potentially hurtful.  I am super-pissed and type faster than I think. 

  • L. Kennedy

    A human chain is NOT nonviolent?  From Ghandi International: “simultaneous and concerted non-violent actions: marches, sit-ins, human chains, observing silence, etc.”  The police officers at your educational institution put chokeholds on your students and jab them in the stomach with batons and you think what the STUDENTS did is “unfortuate?”  Is this how all Chancellors justify their wordlviews?  No wonder ours threw herself off of an apartment building.  Please reconsider your response.

  • Carne3

    “We are not equipped to manage the hygiene, safety, space, and conflict
    issues that emerge when an encampment takes hold and the more
    intransigent individuals gain control. ”

    How does the University feel about the intransients “Occupying” People’s Park. That crap has been going on forever and has become a nuisance for hygiene, safety, space and conflict and yet nothing is done.

    Are you trying to say that once people setttle in one spot they cannot be moved? This sounds a lot like inertia, but that’s not true. If there is truly cause to move the people it shouldn’t  matter.  I don’t understand the logic.

  • http://twitter.com/NDHduz Neil D. Hunt

    Shame on UC Berkeley! You are as bad as Oakland! Humboldt State sure as fuck wouldn’t do that and you claim to be a “Progressive” University? PLEASE!

    • Guest

      So go to Humboldt then, asshole.

  • Cal ’94

    If linking arms is violence, why not just have the police do that instead of beating kids with truncheons?

    • Guest

      ^THIS

  • Alumni Donor?

    ” The campus’s Police Review Board will ultimately determine whether police used excessive force under the circumstances.”
      This is but a trivial part of the truth. The larger truth, as you know, is that the University community including Alumni and potential donors will view the actions of U. C. Police on YouTube, Facebook and everywhere else and will come to their own conclusions. Your only chance to improve relations and future outcomes is to change the rules of engagement handed to your Police Department. What can not be done peaceably should not be done. 

  • Anonymous

    Cal class of ’75 here. I deplore the violent acts of the university police, and the attitude of Chancellor Birgeneau. Ramming someone in the gut with the end of a riot baton, when that individual has not initiated any physical contact with police, is unconscionable. It’s the action of a totalitarian police state; not a great state university. 

    These latest acts of violence, and the weak, self-serving justification provided by Chancellor Birgeneau, are part and parcel of the overall culture of corruption that has infected the university administration over the past several years.

  • DemilitarizeUC

    In other words, everything is fine as long as people’s actions support the authority of alleged representatives to initiate societal changes. As soon as people’s actions are instrumental in restricting the liberties and movement of that authority, and disrupt their monopoly on the use of physical force, the actions are violent; and all response by that authority is justified. Right. Well the next UC Regent’s meeting is next week at UC San Francisco on November 16th and 17th. Sounds like a good opportunity to address the violence that the 1% commits every day.

    • Alan Gregory

      Just protest without tents, moron.

  • Roel van der Wegen

    I hope they remember what they wrote in that letter the day they are asked to either take a 50% pay cut or “resign”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Arel-Scott/100003023956256 Arel Scott

    Reminds me  of a quote from from a speech given on December 2, 1964 at the same location:  

    “Now, there are at least two ways in which sit-ins and civil disobedience and whatever — least two major ways in which it can occur. One, when a law exists, is promulgated, which is totally unacceptable to people and they violate it again and again and again till it’s rescinded, appealed…

    And brings me to the second mode of civil disobedience.  There’s a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart that you can’t take part! You can’t even passively take part! And you’ve got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus — and you’ve got to make it stop! And you’ve got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it — that unless you’re free the machine will be prevented from working at all!!”

    Mario Savio

  • http://twitter.com/justanotweet Rod Mack

    Saw police violently attacking students, if any females were attacked like that and were/are pregnant who is responsible for the injury to the unborn child, students not doing as told is not an excuse to attack violently, students stopping police removing tents is not a valid excuse for that violence,

    • Guest

      Is it a fetus, or an unborn child?
      Are you arguing against abortion rights now?
      You liberal idiots need to make up your mind.

  • http://twitter.com/HellaLights Hella Lights

    #UCBerkeley chancellor says linking arms at #OccupyCal was violence, justified non-violent baton beating of students.

  • Anonymous

    holding hands is violence, so I guess this is too: Fuck You Birgeneau

    • You Are An Idiot

      Here’s some violence for you: GET FUCKED, ANONYMOUS

  • Jvandenburgh

    Our friends Profeesors Robert Hass, Brenda Hillman and Geoffry O’Brien were all struck with nightsticks last night and hurt.  None of them was standing “with linked arms” as is clearly seen in posted viudeo.  

    Write a letter to Governor Brown asking for the President and Chancellor to resign 

  • Rbaker Lynn

    So apparently we are allowed to beat and abuse our children now if they don’t follow their parents rules. Sorry childrens protective services, I guess you just lost your jobs.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

      If those were truly your children, I would not exactly advertise it, as you have clearly done a piss-poor job at parenting…

      • Roel van der Wegen

        Are you the same guy that keeps posting on YT vids because i refuse to believe there are more idiots of your kind.

        • TheWorldHasGoneCrazy

          I cant speak for the videos.  But sadly, there appears to be more.  I believe they spend their days trolling the internet for the sole purpose of arguing..well attempting to argue. 

      • http://gagaism.org Jarraxe

        Yeah how dare anyone teach their children to peacefully stand up for what they believe in. What do you think this is, a democracy??

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

          There’s a difference between having a peaceful demonstration and squatting, vandalizing, and physically challenging the cops. And NO, retard, America is NOT a “democracy”, it’s a CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC. Even the Tea Party people know the difference – obviously you do not. Really now, you so-called progressives are complete ignoramuses when it comes to little details like that…

          • http://gagaism.org Jarraxe

            This is not a fight you want to pick with me. You’re basically arguing semantics. Yes, the US is a constitutional republic. It also falls under the general umbrella term of democracy. Is it a democracy in the purest sense of the word? No. (Though, perhaps it should be closer to that.) However, for the purposes of this discussion, the term “democracy” is perfectly appropriate. If you wish to further argue over terminology, take it up with someone else.

            The bottom line is that I support these students’ efforts. Squatting and physically challenging the police are generally considered to be wrong. However, these students are protesting and highlighting unjust laws, massive corruption, and policies leading to an extremely uneven distribution of wealth, denial of higher education to the masses, and the systematic destabilization of the world economy. I’d say it’s worth breaking a few laws (so long as violence is not involved) in order to stand up against these things. 

            Would you have condemned the tea party (the historical tea party) for breaking the law? Would you have recommended that George Washington be put to death for committing treason against Britain? I would guess not.

            Basically, it comes down to whether or not you agree with what they are protesting. If not, fine. But to claim that anyone who breaks a law or challenges authority deserves whatever punishment they receive is ridiculous and wholly un-American. 

            (By the way, your name-calling only serves as a red flag to those reading your posts. You are not helping your argument.)

          • Anonymous

            The form our democracy takes is a Constitutional Republic. I suppose Fox News and Rush Limbaugh have something to do with this becoming the go-to “argument” for conservatives whenever they hear somebody say that something that is sanctioned by the powers that be in the USA is an affront to our democracy? A Constitutional Republic is not the opposite of a democracy, and you don’t look intelligent by implying that it is. In the words of Ronald Reagan: “Democracy is worth dying for, because it’s the most deeply honorable form of government ever devised by man.” Yes, he was talking about OUR democracy.

  • WoooOOO Specter of Communism

    Maybe for all the handwringing that authorities like to introduce about non-violence to try and shame anybody wanting change, they could actually practice it? Hahaha, like that would happen

  • guest

    Get used to it, world. UC Berkeley, you make me sad. I’m glad I chose not to go there.

  • mike clagg

    Wow.  Accept us beating you if you don’t do what you’re told.  Thanks master for the warning.

    “We call on the protesters to observe campus policy or, if they choose to defy the policy, to engage in truly non-violent civil disobedience and to accept the consequences of their decisions.” 

    • Alan Gregory

      Don’t like it? Go to a different college, asshole.

      • Guest

        If you’re endorsing Birgeneau’s statement, then YOU should be going to a different college. Who goes to Berkeley unaware of its dense history of activism?

        • You Are An Idiot

          History is history.

          Birgeneau is Chancellor NOW.

          Don’t like it? Go to a different college, asshole.

          • Rich G

            You seem to be a strong proponent of the status quo no matter what it is. Just because he’s our chancellor now does not mean his ideas are best for a community who has attracted free thinkers because of its history and culture. HISTORY is important in establishing that precedent. If you don’t think history is significant, then I’m sure you also think common law (which uses history to establish legal precedents) is somehow just as unimportant. Just because something currently IS, doesn’t mean it’s what is best or what is should be. Neither the past (history) or the future (what the community thinks is best) is currently happy with the reactions of the Chancellor or the Police towards students and PROFESSORS.  People of course are allowed to disagree. Just saying.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

            You seem to be a strong proponent of the status quo no matter what it is. Just because he’s our chancellor now does not mean his ideas are best for a community who has attracted free thinkers because of its history and culture.

            Somehow I have trouble imagining people who act like resurrected protest zombies from the 1960′s as “free thinkers”…

          • Sdfsdf

            Probably would be a better idea if your language is an example of what they teach at this college. How long does it take to learn to spell the word @ssh0le? Or did the spell check fix it for you?

  • Anonymous

    Linking arms is violence? WTH?

  • http://www.facebook.com/kannbrown65 Karen Brown

    So, ‘non-violent civil disobedience means ‘doing what you’re told the minute you’re told to do it’?  I thought a college dean would have a better grasp on the whole ‘disobedience’ part of the phrase. And how did ‘linking arms’ become violence?

    • Guest

      They were told in 24 hours in advance that setting up tents would not be allowed.

      Blocking the police from removing an illegal encampment is an act of aggression.

      Try thinking for once.

      • SillyTroll

        aggression?
        ahahahahahahaha!

        • SillyTroll is a piece of shit

          Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

      • UCRegentshave$$

        81% FEE HIKE IS ALSO an ACT OF Aggression!! 

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

          No it is not, so stop being an idiot.

      • Guest

        It was an act of disobedience by those protesting. Nothing violent except for the police.

      • Senselocke

        Definition of VIOLENCE1a : exertion of physical force so as to injure or abuse (as in warfare effecting illegal entry into a house)

        http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/violence

        The very definition of violence is the exertion of physical force, so standing still and not moving is as far from it as you can get. The ones applying force to the bludgeons and truncheons are the ones being violent–the ones on the receiving end not striking back cannot by definition be being violent.

        As clever as you thought “try thinking for once” sounded, the force of the statement is lost when you don’t even understand the basic meaning of the words you speak.

      • brien

        >> Blocking the police from removing an illegal encampment is an act of aggression.

        No, it’s an act of protest. Protest is not the same as aggression. 

        >> Try thinking for once.

        Back at you. Try reading some history about the United States and how societal advances are made.

  • http://profiles.google.com/breakfastinbeard .. .__.

    HOW IS LINKING ARMS a form of “violence”?

    Talk about Education making someone DUMBER…

  • Willie Graca

    I don’t think they responded to this video.  http://www.dailycal.org/2011/11/10/campus-administrators-send-out-message-responding-to-occupy-cal-demonstrations/

  • Anonymous

    We regret that, given the instruction to take down tents and prevent encampment, the police were forced to use their batons to enforce the policy…if they choose to defy the policy, to engage in truly non-violent civil disobedience and to accept the consequences of their decisions.

    Translation:

    “We regret that we had to kick your butt, we’ll kick your butt again and if you complain, you’re a violent thug.”

    • http://profiles.google.com/breakfastinbeard .. .__.

      TENTS are apparently SO dangerous to the campus and its staff, that ASSAULT is now authorized.

      • Guest

        Tents were explicitly banned.
        The protesters KNEW they were explicitly banned.

        The police were justified in their use of force.

        • Joseph

          I like that the same anonymous S.O.B. felt the need to repeat his idiocy ad nauseam.  Civil disobedience is called “disobedience” for a reason you  twit; that doesn’t make it violent and it certainly doesn’t mean that breaking ribs and crushing a woman’s spleen is justified.

        • missionpine

          People like you who reflexively defend the violent suppression of dissent represent a truly debased form of humanity.  You are cowards who long to be slaves to others, rather than free people.  You disgust me.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

            [People like you who reflexively defend the violent suppression of dissent represent a truly debased form of humanity.]

            People like you who think that every protest has to incorporate some type of confrontation with law enforcement folks are the debased form of humanity here. Why don’t you f-cking grow up, child?

          • Kpjbt56

            Tony M I will be brief, You have NO idea what you are talking about!

  • Anonymous

    Someone explain to me how linking arms falls under the definition of “violence.” 

    • Some person

      Because you’re physically obstructing the police from doing their job.

      • Guest

        you can’t be serious, last time my car broke down and obstructed traffic no one accused me of manslaughter. violence is behavior involving physical force intended to hurt, damage, or kill someone- while obstruction is impeding passage. NOT THE SAME.

        • Anonymous

          When your car broke down you didn’t try to set up a tent and camp on the street.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

            Come on now… I see your point, but please don’t give these idiots any more ideas…

      • PrincessOccupy

        OK this whole thing is subjective.  But saying “Physically obstructing the police from doing their job” is a violent act  is not accurate.  Linking arms to protest the removal of 3 tents which are going to be used in conjunction with the act of expressing one’s first amendment right of free speech is an act of civil disobedience.  Those students stood there and were attacked and they showed tremendous courage.  I’m not sure if I could have that happen to me and not  react, and I am a 39 year old mother who has never broke a law AND my husband is in Law Enforcement. I’m assuming these students were prepared to be arrested for this act, but not prepared to be beaten.  I am appalled at the fact U.S. citizens are facing brutal attacks at the hands of those  sworn to protect them. It’s time for all of us to take a deep breath and consider the ramifications of this cat and mouse game. The actions of those who protest and the direct response of those in power should be fair and equal to prevent unjust harm, i.e. Scott Olsen, Marine Veteran seriously injured in Oakland, Ca. at the hands of the police while he simply stood in silence, a right he himself had  fought for.

        • Guest

          You can link your arms all you want, just don’t block the police from doing their job of taking down an illegal encampment.

          • Castorp

            And that makes the arm linking VIOLENT how?

          • http://twitter.com/DocMara DocMara

            Freedom of speech and assembly have been violated. Tents are irrelevant here.

      • Guest

        Some Person — you clearly haven’t done your homework.

        vi·o·lence/ˈvī(ə)ləns/
        Noun:
        Behavior involving physical force intended to hurt, damage, or kill someone or something.

      • Dsdfdskf

        If Judy hadn’t barred someone from “doing” their job, California wouldn’t have a redwood forest.

        http://www.judibari.org/

      • Senselocke

        VIOLENCE : exertion of physical force so as to
        injure or abuse another.Refusing to cooperate is not violence. Standing your ground is not violence.Failure to comply is not violence.Protesting is not violence.The cops were violent–what with the hitting, macing, shoving, hitting, etc. The people standing still not hitting others were not the ones being violent.If you think “resisting” or “not cooperating” is violence, you don’t know what violence is or means. Which is sad if you’re over the age of four.

  • Jennifer Black

    Tents are the meaning .

  • Peter Mills

    The police were forced to hit peaceful students because some sick monster ordered them to hit young students.  Millions of people know the truth.

    • Guest

      The police were forced to hit peaceful students because  the students would not allow them to peacefully remove the illegal encampment. Millions of people know the truth.

      • guest

        The police should never have hit peaceful students.  period.

        • You Are An Idiot

          The protesters (most aren’t students) should never have set up an illegal tent encampment after expressly being told not to. Period.

          • Rich G

            You are an Idiot, first of all funny name you chose, because when we address you this is what we have to use. Secondly, you are right that it was against the policies of the school, but as a matter of fact, these protesters were STUDENTS and Professors. Get your facts straight. Thirdly, disobedience does not automatically convey getting the SH*( beat out of you, especially considering the setting and place of the protest and the way the crowds conducted themselves in  a peaceful manner. The issue here is not whether what they did was allowed or not, but that there was excessive use of force by the police. 

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

            You sound as dumb as those idiot Palestinians in the Gaza Strip who throw rocks at Israelis with guns and wonder why once in a while they get shot. If you go looking for a confrontation with a group of individuals who have the legal authority to forcefully remove you from your stupid little squatter’s camp, don’t come running to us any crying like a baby if you get hurt. Now I realize that you aren’t exactly the sharpest tool in the shed, but here’s a hint: it IS possible to exercise your right to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly if you didn’t have to incorporate some element of physical violence or confrontation in every demonstration. The Tea Party people manage to have their protests without getting arrested or having physical confrontations with the cops. Maybe they are  just a bit smarter than you?

          • Rich G

            Mr. Tony, first off I will refrain from being vulgar in the same manner you have chosen to do so. The point is not to throw insults but to effectuate smart discourse. Anyways, putting that aside and your remarks to a whole other conflict, this again has to do with the use of excessive force or not. There are many people, some who are better experts in matters of 4th Amendment protections and excessive force cases than you or me, that believe there is a strong case here for the use of excessive force by police.  Here’s a link to the article you can read up more about it. Thanks for sharing your ideas, but preferably you can stick to more substance and less anger next time. Thanks.   http://www.baycitizen.org/occupy-movement/story/uc-berkeley-pledges-investigate-police/

          • guest

            i’m pretty sure this tony dude is just kidding you guys

      • Kyle

        The police were not forced, and they never are. The police are the force.

  • world is watching

    Over 200,000 people saw police truncheoning students for no reason.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

      More exaggeration from the usual silly children…

      • FGIS

        More bullshit from Tony the fascist troll. 

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WRACM77JT2RXUR3LMGDPPUGUYY Tony M

          CONGRATULATIONS, my little stalker! That’s the 100th handle name you have used in your lame attempt to pretend you are more than one person posting.

          Sorry that it isn’t working for you – has it really been worth your time?

          • brien

            Hey tony I just came across your comment and I think you’re a fucking idiot.

      • Erin Curtis

        Yes, the youtube counter is moving toward 300,000 and a good percentage are alumni.  

      • SillyTroll

        TONY M IS JUST A TROLL
        TROLL
        TROLL
        TROLL
        TROLL
        TROLLTROLLTROLLTROLLTROLLTROLLTROLLTROLL

        • Silly Troll Is A Moron

          SILLYTROLL IS A PATHETIC JACKASS
          JACKASS
          JACKASS
          JACKASS
          JACKASS
          JACKASSJACKASSJACKASSJACKASSJACKASSJACKASS

          • jojo

            Very productive. Stay classy.

    • Guest

      I saw the police truncheoning students for blocking the police from removing an illegal encampment. What video did you see?

      • Guest

        If you think this is an appropriate use of force, then you deserve to be institutionalized: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zD1pjU-RT5g&feature=related

      • Castorp

        Spot on.

        Do ANYTHING illegal, and you  absolutely should get the crap beat out of you by the police.

        Welcome to Saudi Arabia.

        (PS: remember to be obedient at all times, and pay your rising tuition bill with a big smile on your face.)

  • I am so dumb

    linking arms is violent

    • Cal88

      I think Birge is just advocating an arms control policy.

  • Some person

    Finally, some sense.

    • Hi

      shut up idiot.

      • Some person

        How very intelligent of you.