SURJ Calls for Direct Action Against White Supremacist Speaker

surjnnmSTAND UP AGAINST WHITE SUPREMACY.

THIS FRIDAY 1/27/17  **Protest at 5:00, Event begins at 6:00**  Student Union Ballroom, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131

Northern New Mexico SURJ (Showing Up for Racial Justice) has been invited by a coalition of students at UNM to participate in their rally and direct action against white supremacist Milo Yiannopoulos who will be speaking on campus. As a result of Milo’s ongoing endorsement of fascist and white nationalist hate, he is dangerous and a serious safety concern for indigenous students, students of color, transgender and gender nonconforming, female, disabled, and Muslim students. The student coalition is calling for SURJ members to show up as allies and accomplices. Let’s show up in numbers!

Important:  This is a student protest that we are there to support. Do not deviate from the directions from student groups present who have organized this event. Retake Our Democracy also recommends that our supporters make calls and protest peacefully outside, but not participate in actions inside the meeting. We will be trained in Civil Disobedience by SURJ soon, but this is not the time or place to get our feet wet.

Ways to show up on Friday:

Event Details.  No bags, food, or drinks allowed inside the venue.

Ticketing.  Right now it is unclear whether tickets will be required to get in, or not. The ticketing page states “sold out” but again, they may not be required. If you reserved a ticket through Eventbrite and are not going, please send the Eventbrite confirmation email (that serves as the ticket) to nnmsurj@gmail.com so that we can redistribute them to folks trying to get in if tickets are required after all.

Protest outside the venue.  From the protest Facebook event page: “The Red Nation will be hosting a protest which will be sustained by the coalition of student organizations of UNM in the event any attendees wish to remain in non-confrontational protest rather than partaking in more physical means of shutting the event down.” Even if you cannot get a ticket, please come to the protest!

Direct action inside the venue.  It is the student coalition’s intention to “Take the room, take the stage, take the mic.” If you are showing up as part of SURJ and want to be a part of the direct actions inside the venue, look for the SURJ organizers with large pink triangle pins on our jackets who will pass on information from the student coalition.

HOW we show up is as important as IF we show up. For this action, members of Northern New Mexico SURJ will follow the lead of student organizers. We have been invited to work with a coalition of indigenous, chican@, poc, lgbtq, and other students who are fighting hate speech that will impact their safety on their campus and in their city. Showing up in solidarity means that we recognize that we are not the ones who are directly impacted, and that we will support the students, their analysis, and their approach.

Can’t attend Friday or want to act sooner? Call UNM officials!  Many students and community members have presented their objection to the event to the UNM Board of Regents and the UNM President through official channels. One such Statement of Concern is attached – Denouncement of Violence Against Marginalized Students. The university has declined to cancel the event. Please continue to voice your concern directly to the university.

“Phone the office of acting UNM president Abdallah, 505-277-2626, saying that UNM should not allow Milo to speak on campus this Friday because it would violate UNM Administrative Policy 2720, The Equal Opportunity, Non-Discrimination, and Affirmative Action Policy (Regents Policy Manual Section 2.3) which “forbids unlawful discrimination and/or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, physical or mental disability, age, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, ancestry, spousal affiliation, medical condition or veteran status.” The policy gives an example of harassment as “unwelcome jokes or comments about a protected characteristic.” Milo Yiannopoulos has a pattern of such discriminatory behavior, and a university campus should not give such behavior a platform, it violates UNM’s own policies.” (From the Facebook page).

See you on Friday!