Protesters will begin march from UC Berkeley to Sacramento this week

Protesters sit outside Wheeler Hall during the March 4, 2011, ledge sit. A march from Berkeley to Sacramento is planned to begin Thursday, as protesters continue demonstrations in support of public education.
Brenna Alexander/File
Protesters sit outside Wheeler Hall during the March 4, 2011, ledge sit. A march from Berkeley to Sacramento is planned to begin Thursday, as protesters continue demonstrations in support of public education.

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Beginning March 1, protesters in support of Occupy Education California plan to embark on a “99 Mile March for Education and Social Justice” to the capitol building in Sacramento, after holding rallies at UC Berkeley.

About 25 people — many of them students — met at an office on Allston Way Saturday evening to discuss plans for the upcoming demonstrations in support of public education, which will involve a four-day trek from Berkeley to Sacramento that already included 88 participants as of the meeting.

The plans for mass protest follow widespread criticism over campus police’s use of batons at the Nov. 9 Occupy Cal protest.

Last Tuesday, campus officials announced the creation of a Protest Response Team charged with planning for future protests and stressing effective communication between protesters and faculty members. The announcement — which came on the heels of occupations in the campus anthropology library and the steps outside of Doe Library — stated that police engagement with protesters will only be authorized by an on-site senior administrator to “minimize the prospect of physical harm.”

The March 1 protest is planned to begin with teach-outs across the campus starting at 8 a.m., with a rally on Sproul Plaza at noon featuring different speakers who are not yet finalized, according to campus graduate student Amanda Armstrong.

At 12:45 p.m., protesters plan to march to Frank Ogawa Plaza in Oakland and begin the march to the Capitol for the March 5 day of action.

“It’s going to be difficult, it’s going to be a challenge, but that’s part of the beauty of what we’re going to do,” said Beezer de Martelly, a campus graduate student and one of the organizers of the march.

Participants in the march plan to meet at 2 p.m. in the plaza and begin their march an hour later, making a stop at Berkeley High School for a rally supporting the Berkeley Federation of Teachers.

“We’ll have rallies every day,” said Kevin Faircloth, a San Francisco State University senior and one of the organizers of the march. “Rallies in the morning for sure, to make sure people’s spirits are up before we get going — that’s big.”

The first night — following a four hour march — will bring protesters to either Richmond or San Pablo, where they plan to spend the night at either St. Mark’s Catholic Church in Richmond or Contra Costa College. Protesters intend to stay in either Benicia or Vallejo on the second night after a five to seven hour march, depending on where the marchers get permission to stay.

On day three, Faircloth and de Martelly have planned for protesters to split up into two groups to cover the next 30-mile stretch. The first group will begin marching at 6 a.m. to Solano Community College and the second group — which will be bused to the college — is planned to march the second half to Vacaville.

On the fourth day, described by de Martelly as “the toughest day,” demonstrators plan to tackle a 23-mile route to UC Davis, where they will meet up with Occupy Davis protesters and spend the night on the campus quad.

Protesters intend to arrive at the capitol via bus at 10 a.m. March 5, where they plan to determine whether or not to occupy the Capitol building, de Martelly said.

“Six p.m. is when the Capitol building closes and that’s a crucial time,” de Martelly said. “It’s an important decision time for us, and everyone with us will be a part of that decision. We’ll need to decide then what to do from there.”

Geena Cova covers academics and administration.

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  • Apis_amie

    Richard: Medi-Cal,  law enforcement, and public education costs make up a small amount of tax payers’ money compared to what is spent on unnecessary wars, the illegal (at least constitutionally and through international law) torturing of prisoners (also who were denied a trial), and the trillions of dollars given to bail out banks In California, simply making corporations pay property taxes would deliver much of the needed funds for public education. Many professors are overpaid, but the administration continues to expand and receive exorbitant raises– while student tuition hikes are guaranteed by the UC Regents in order to secure good bond ratings for building construction on campus. With all due respect, your dichotomy of “cut Medi-Cal or ask a few professors to receive smaller paychecks” just doesn’t make sense in the face of the information regarding the budget cuts to education in California.
    Here are a few excellent resources to learn more about the situation:

    Charlie Schwartz on the economics of the UC Budget:
    http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~schwrtz/Part_21.html

    Will Parish’s article about UC Regent Blum:
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2010/03/01/who-runs-the-university-of-california/

    Bob Meister’s take on UC bonds and student tuition:
    http://keepcaliforniaspromise.org/383/they-pledged-your-tuition

    Proposition 13 gives Corporations a tax loophole:
    http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/state&id=8310262

    p.s.: People who criticize popular movements and do nothing to participate in change might want to think about their future. Our planet is being destroyed by a destructive and extremely corrupt neo-liberal financial system. Your children won’t get a chance to go to college at all if public education is successfully privatized (which is what the regents and others in power plan to do). It boggles my mind that people are not willing to protest or pay taxes. Protestors, with their silly tactics and their lack of rational thought, are those who brought you the eight hour work day, the “weekend” (yeah, we used to not have that!), rights for minorities, the right for women to vote, the right for poor people to vote, etc. It’s not as if our great leaders took it upon themselves one day to improve the lives of the underrepresented.
    That’s why it’s so sad when Occupy Oakland is criticized as being co-opted by the dreaded anarchist black-blockers. There are a few people who have vandalized private property. But some people who call themselves anarchists were the ones to bring the sound system to Oscar Grant Plaza every night so that people could HAVE a general assembly. These dirty anarchists taught crowds the process of consensus so that decisions could be made. These horrible, violent bastards even acted as medics, dishwashers, food servers, and advocates for queer rights within the movement. They provided fundamental organizing skills for the port shutdown, which 20,000 people participated in! I’m not saying that people identified as anarchists did everything that was constructive, but without them, much of the organizing force would not have materialized. The Occupy movement owes much of its power and social welfare successes to people identified as radicals or anarchists. They are not violent fiends, but caring, devoted people. And just because sometimes the tactics of a few seem misguided or stupid doesn’t mean we should villify them. The government is threatening to federalize OPD. That’s a clue to how corrupt and oppressive the police can be.

    • Stan De San Diego

       >”Richard: Medi-Cal,  law enforcement, and public education costs make up a
      small amount of tax payers’ money compared to what is spent on
      unnecessary wars”

      Earth to Apis_amie: military/defense spending comes from the FEDERAL budget, not the STATE budget. Not a single dollar has been deprived from the UC budget due to military spending, so cut the crap.

      >”The Occupy movement owes much of its power and social welfare successes to people identified as radicals or anarchists.”

      And those successes have been what? Riots, vandalism, looting, rape and sexual assault, and in the case of Occupy Oakland, strongarm robbery and at least 1 homicide. Not a record anyone should be proud of.

  • http://profiles.google.com/rnw.sfme Richard Wang

    So you march/bus to Sacramento.

    And after that, what’s the plan? 

    What’s the proposal?

    There’s a $9,600,000,000, deficit or in simple terms – “There’s No More Money”.

    What should the state do?

    Cut K-12 education?  Cut law enforcement?  Cut Medi-Cal?  Raise taxes by 50%? Eliminate the community colleges?

    All so you can get reduced tuition?

    Here’s something useful. 

    Next time you see a professor talking about the injustice of college budget cuts, why don’t you ask them….

    “Hey, you make between $104,000 to $180,000.  How about you sacrifice for education and take a pay cut.”

  • Guest

    Hey, Tony, let’s cut through the loudness of this thread and let me ask you:  is this not a more reasonable thing for these guys to do?   I mean this, at least, has a little class to it, no?   I dunno, I have no qualms with this one, m’self. 

    • Guest

      Ignore this post, T.  You answered my query above.  Hey, I’m holding out hope this handful can change the tone of these demonstrations.  ‘Course my optimism might kick me in the ass.  We’ll see. 

  • Toni M

    Rabble rabble libtards rabble rabble cal kiddies rabble rabble non academic majors rabble rabble liberal politics rabble rabble rabble

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

       Looks like my little stalker chihuahua is back.

      • libsrclowns

        LOL

  • Guest

    You know, I haven’t supported the Occupy movement’s methods and, therefore, not Occupy from the very beginning.  This, however, is different.  This is a wise decision.   

    And I’ll bet you guys that even Tony M will not talk bad about this one.  Seriously.  

    How ’bout it, Tony?  

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

       I’m all for it, children. Keep marching, and see if you can learn to present yourselves as intelligent rational adults when stating your case. If not, then don’t bother coming back.

  • Fuck Tony M

    hi i’m part of ocupy and i’d just like to show my suport here foryou guys. dont let douchebags like tony m get u down ! !

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

       Is that you, crusty?

      • crusty

         nope.

    • Guest

      You are not part of Occupy, and I’ll tell you why:  you’re really just a tagalong nuisance to Occupiers.  Real occupiers know how to broaden support by drawing in those who even initially oppose them through constructive dialogue.  I, myself, do not identify as an occupier, but I know plenty of genuine ones and you, sir/ma’am, have no place at all in their movement.   Now why don’t you go ahead and fuck yourSELF.  

  • Go Occupy!

    occupiers pls keep http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occupy_Cal updated.

    we need to spread the word and wiki is a good way to do it!!!

  • TonyMs_RClowns_DeSD

    trolls find this thread in 3, 2, 1 …

    • Guest

      LOL.

    • libsrclowns

      And after 99 miles the outcome is what?

      Please don’t say awareness…..LOL