Coalition releases demands in response to bake sale

In response to an upcoming controversial bake sale on campus, a list of seven tentative demands by a coalition of UC Berkeley students of the campus administration were posted online — but leaders of that coalition said the demands are not finalized and their release was premature.

“The leaders of a developing multicultural coalition are not responsible for this (blog post’s) publication,” said Salih Muhammad and Reuben Canedo, members of the coalition’s logistics committee, in a statement. “The (post) reflects notes from a community meeting that we held on Friday, September 23, and all points on here will be critically discussed and developed as a communal body. The leaders of this coalition do not endorse the aforementioned statements… We look forward to better communication in our collective futures.”

The students met at Rochdale Village Apartments on Friday evening to discuss and respond to the Berkeley College Republicans’ “Increase Diversity Bake Sale,” which is intended to protest SB 185, an affirmative action-like bill currently awaiting signature from Gov. Jerry Brown. The pricing of the sale’s baked goods varies according to the consumer’s race and gender.

According to the blog post, the Friday meetingwas moved to the Multicultural Community Center in the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union building on the UC Berkeley campus and grew to nearly 200 students “of underrepresented communities of color.”

“Support for affirmative action was overwhelming, and continuations committees were formed,” the blog post states.

The blog post lists the following as “Tentative Demands for the UC Berkeley Campus Administration” :

  1. “Concretize the vague language of the university’s “Principles of Community” so that it explicitly condemns racism, sexism, xenophobia, ableism, islamaphobia, anti-semitism, classism, sizeism, homophobia, hetreosexism, transphobia, and cissexism.”
  2. “Include the university’s (updated) “Principles of Community” on every course syllabus in the manner of our Statement of Academic Honesty. If the university is to concern itself with making students feel safe in the classroom, then we believe that students should feel that their instructors are committed to maintaining that safe space, not just hoping for it.”
  3. “Integrate the (updated) “Principles of Community” into the Student Code of Conduct, thus creating a system in which anti-community offenses are subject to disciplinary action.”
  4. “Restructure the American Cultures Requirement to be an Ethnic Studies/Gender Studies Requirement. The function of this requirement must be to prepare students to engage in respectful cross-cultural interaction outside of the classroom, rather than a vacuous exploration of texts. “
  5. ” Removal of the following clause from the description of the American Cultures curriculum guidelines,

    “This is not an ethnic studies requirement, nor a Third World cultures requirement, nor an adjusted Western civilization requirement, nor a course on racism.”

    If courses are going to claim to be teaching some aspect of “American Culture”, these subjects must addressed, especially the issue of racism.”

  6. “Cultural competence training for all UC Berkeley Students in the manner of the pre-freshman Alcohol EDU program. Training is to be co-facilitated by representatives from both the Office of Equity and Inclusion and the student body.”
  7.  “An end to UCPD intimidation and harassment of students.”

The coalition is coordinating a mass demonstration on Sproul Plaza at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday — the same date as the bake sale.