Revolution #80, March 4, 2007


UCLA Protest Against the Minutemen

On February 6, over 200 students at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) along with others gathered outside a campus lecture hall to protest the scheduled speaker--Carl Braun, executive director of the California Minutemen. The Minutemen are vigilantes who advocate and deploy armed patrols on the border to hunt down immigrants. The UCLA students were inspired by the protest against the Minutemen at Columbia University in New York City last October, when students took to the stage with a banner saying “No One Is Illegal” during a campus appearance by several Minutemen leaders.

Various student groups--including MEChA de UCLA, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), and others—organized the protest when Braun was invited to speak by a right-wing group on campus called L.O.G.I.C. (Liberty, Objectivity, Greed, Individualism and Capitalism). The event was supposed to be a debate between Braun and Yaron Brook, the executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute—representing pro-business interests. When the Minutemen and UCLA administrators found out that a large protest was being planned, they asked L.O.G.I.C. to pay for extra security. L.O.G.I.C. did not, and the event was canceled. The students still held a lively rally outside of the lecture hall where the event had been scheduled, with a big banner that read “Hate Speech Is Not Free Speech.”

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