Saturday, January 26
Tazer U: Post-9/11 Higher Education Pacificiation Program
Recent Harvard graduate Michael Gould-Wartofsky's column "Repress U", appearing in The Nation's 28 January (Monday) issue, is in part excerpted below.
Free-speech zones. Taser guns*. Hidden cameras. Data mining. A new security curriculum. Private security contractors. Welcome to the homeland security campus.*Related: In February 2007, Milkhouse Mouse reported on the campus tasing of the Iranian-American student at UCLA. The second student tazing Wartofsky mentions is that at the University of Florida during a talk by Senator John Kerry.
From Harvard to UCLA, the ivory tower is fast becoming the latest watchtower in Fortress America. The terror warriors, having turned their attention to "violent radicalization and homegrown terrorism prevention"--as it was recently dubbed in a House of Representatives bill of the same name--have set out to reconquer that traditional hotbed of radicalization, the university.Building a homeland security campus and bringing the university to heel is a seven-step mission:
1. Target dissidents. As the warfare state has triggered dissent, the campus has attracted increasing scrutiny--with student protesters in the cross hairs. The government's number-one target? Peace and justice organizations.
From 2003 to 2007 an unknown number of them made it into the Pentagon's Threat and Local Observation Notice system (TALON), a secretive domestic spying program ostensibly designed to track direct "potential terrorist threats" to the Defense Department itself. In 2006 the ACLU uncovered, via Freedom of Information Act requests, at least 186 specific TALON reports on "anti-military protests" in the United States--some listed as "credible threats"--from student groups at the University of California, Santa Cruz; State University of New York, Albany; Georgia State University; and New Mexico State University, among other campuses.
At more than a dozen universities and colleges, police officers now double as full-time FBI agents, and according to the Campus Law Enforcement Journal, they serve on many of the nation's 100 Joint Terrorism Task Forces. These dual-purpose officer-agents have knocked on student activists' doors from North Carolina State to the University of Colorado and, in one case, interrogated an Iraqi-born professor at the University of Massachusetts about his antiwar views.
FBI agents, or their campus stand-ins, don't have to do all the work. Administrators often do it for them, setting up "free-speech zones," which actually constrain speech, and punishing those who step outside them. Protests were typically forced into "free-assembly areas" at the University of Central Florida and Clemson University, while students at Hampton and Pace universities faced expulsion for handing out antiwar fliers, aka "unauthorized materials."... read more
Watch below Kerry's shameful performance on behalf of civil rights.
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