Taking November 4 to a Big, Diverse High School

October 13, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |


Yesterday we went to a big, diverse high school. This school had a recent protest against the rescinding of DACA. Three of us went at lunch, focusing on getting out fact sheets and stickers into the school. We had a couple of smaller panels with the indictments from Refuse Fascism, on Immigrants and the Environment, and a quiz we made up using those indictments. We also had a sign with Trump in the KKK hat. Even at lunch, it was clear there was a lot of interest from students. While students are more in a hurry on their 50-minute lunch hour, several stopped to talk, read the panels, ask questions, and get stickers. Some put them on. Even students who didn’t want literature wanted the stickers. Some students were asking about Nov.4, what’s it about, what’s going to happen.

When we went across the street to eat lunch, a student in there was taking the quiz we made, and said it was interesting. She told us that even before last weekend, several students in different classes had been refusing to stand for the national anthem, sitting through it. Some teachers supported them, others didn’t. One of her teachers did, and had a discussion about free speech. The student agreed with our urgency around the danger of the Trump regime, although she thought voting for candidates who would challenge him was important. She said she would talk to that teacher about Nov.4, about having a program based on the quiz or the broadsheet, and to a student arts organization she’s in about helping to organize for Nov. 4.

At 3:15 we went back, more in full throttle, with several panels, including the big Women/LGBT one, and the one with the 10 nightmares, a poster board that said “Nov. 4 it begins! Trump/Pence must go because...”, and a Trump puppet, and several people, including agitating on a bullhorn. It was quite a scene. Students were grabbing stickers, standing around in groups talking, signing the posterboard, whacking the puppet and taking pictures and selfies of themselves with it. At one point we asked the students to “take a knee against white supremacy” and a bunch of students did, by the posterboard with all the messages. A lot of the messages were versions of “fuck Trump,” but others were “you can’t have democracy run by fascists” and “trans people deserve to exist.”

Even some of the more conservative students engaged us. One asked what we thought of the so-called “free speech week”—which was really an attempt to have a fascist speech week at UC Berkeley. She didn’t think Milo is a fascist or Nazi because he’s gay and Jewish, but she thought even Nazis should have free speech. When I asked her how come Nazis have free speech but Black athletes don’t, she saw the contradiction. She said she was thinking of starting a conservative club. She took a broadsheet to read. We learned that November 4 is already generating controversy in the school. One group of white youth asked us, “are you starting a coup on November 4” and said that was going around on the internet. Refuse Fascism has refuted these lies. There was also an incident at lunch: as we were leaving, a couple of white guys pulled down posters we had put up on light poles, saying they couldn’t be there. At first we thought they might be school groundskeepers, but they watched us for a while from down the street and we thought they may have been trolls.

But overall, the response was tremendously positive. At least one student said she wants to start some kind of student organization that could take up November 4. Another student, when asked what she thought of all this, said “We are lucky to be in a time when we can stand up to a monster.” We have about a dozen contacts, and will get back to them right away.




Volunteers Needed... for and Revolution

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.