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Day Of Action’ For Education Unites California

— Hundreds of demonstrations and marches are taking place in California and in San Diego County today. Students and teachers are protesting against further state education budget cuts in what’s called “A Day of Action.”

San Diego State University students attend a noontime rally on March 4, 2010, as part of the statewide protest against budget cuts.
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Above: San Diego State University students attend a noontime rally on March 4, 2010, as part of the statewide protest against budget cuts.

This is first time in recent history that student and teachers at all levels of public education are coming together on the same day to protest. Students at San Diego State University have a unique message.

They recorded video testimonials about how budget cuts have affected their lives. These personal messages will be sent to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Several hundred San Diego State University students come together on March 4, 2010, as part of the 'Day of Action' demonstrations.
Enlarge this image

Above: Several hundred San Diego State University students come together on March 4, 2010, as part of the 'Day of Action' demonstrations.

It’s all part of what's called "Vent at the Tent." Students hope these testimonials will have more of an impact.

Tina Solorzano-Fletcher is a senior at SDSU and works at a local community college. Her son attends a public school.

“So all of these budget cuts that you're proposing, Governor, is affecting all of my life,” said Solorzano-Fletcher as she recorded her own video testimonial. “My fees have gone up over $500 and I'm getting less instruction because of your mandatory furlough days.”

Data collected from SDSU and state officials show there will be 4,600 fewer students in the upcoming school year and 230 fewer teachers. There will also be more than 860 fewer classes.

Comments

Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | March 4, 2010 at 6:04 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

‘Day Of Action’ For Education Unites California. Wow. Talk about an exaggeration. There are many people who think students pay far too little at our public universities. Taxpayers are burdened with 66% of their education, while students cover only 33% and even then many receive waivers and scholarships from the state.

Lets also not forget who organized all these protests. The International Socialist Organization (ISO). This was not organized by students or teachers.

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Avatar for user 'IPBM_RWOX_HDRV'

IPBM_RWOX_HDRV | March 4, 2010 at 8:12 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

"public universities"
"Taxpayers are burdened with 66%"
Wait, what?

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Avatar for user 'SDSUstudentworker'

SDSUstudentworker | March 5, 2010 at 12:43 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

Dear "CaliforniaDefender",

Your are sadly mistaken about who organized these statewide events. At SDSU a spontaneously formed committee (known as the March 4th Committee) headed the efforts to coordinate and plan for this event. I would like to emphasize the fact that this was STUDENT organized. The ISO, as you state in your comment, had absolutely NO presence at SDSU! Perhaps it makes you feel better to think that students would not, or could not, organize such a massive statewide, multi-campus event in opposition to the policies of Sacramento and Washington. Yesterday was an unprecedented event in the sense that CA has never seen all three systems of public higher education (UC, CSU, and CC) unify in opposition. We should all be proud of the students and workers who took part in this.

Furthermore, public education is based on the fundamental egalitarian principle that everyone should have access to quality education. In our economic system, in which the social wealth of society is privately held by a tiny fraction of the population, this form of education seems impossible - for capitalism is based on the notion of inequality.

You say "Taxpayers are burdened with 66% of their education, while students cover only 33%." Is society not burdened with the multi-trillion dollar bail-out of the banks (!), and the continued funding of two criminal wars!? So long as the social wealth of society, which is produced by society as a whole, is held privately by a tiny few, the interests and needs of students and workers will be trumped by those of the financial elite who have a strangle hold on the economic and political system.

Yesterday’s actions are a testament to the fact that political consciousness is rising, and students and workers are uniting in opposition to the onslaught against their lives. Existing political avenues have not produced the results that students and workers wanted, and we have learned lessons from that. Pressuring the politicians is a dead end! The Democrats and Republicans do not represent the interest of students and workers. I took part in the organizing of the SDSU rally, and I commend my fellow students and workers for taking part in such a historic event. March 4th is only the beginning of a nationwide struggle against the current attacks students and workers are facing – history is on our side.

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Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | March 8, 2010 at 12:27 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

SDSUstudentworker -

I watched the protest on TV and noticed that there were large banners and flags promoting the ISO and socialism in general throughout the march. That prompted me to look up the ISO's website which confirmed their organization of the event. So your claim that this was a student organized event is just flat out false. Students may have been involved and I'm sure there are socialist student organizations at SDSU, so their support would be natural. You must be very proud that you had people marching on all campuses. But in the end, this exercise was not taken seriously.

Did you face any opposition at all? Any counter protests, police, or university officials preventing you from marching? No? There was a reason, and it wasn't your charm. It was because you have no credibility and pose absolutely no threat to the authorities and politicians who write education policy. Most people look at the protesters as just college kids going through their radical phase. We all did it. Now you are doing the same and will look back in 5 years when you have a job as a Wal-Mart cashier and think "What on Earth was I doing in college?"

I agree with your outrage of Obama's bail out of the banks and his support of corporate greed. That is criminal and is what you should be protesting loudly in the streets and on every campus. However, a college education is not a right, it is a privilege. Taxpayers have already provided 12 years of free education to every single child in California, citizen or not. The only investment taxpayers should make into higher education are the physical buildings and utilities. Anything past that is up to students to pay for. You want better professors or more degrees offered? Pay for it. It is not fair to ask taxpayers to cover optional costs for adults. Minors are one thing, but adults must pay for higher education. Period.

Oh, and you say history is on your side? Apparently you have been too busy marching to open a history book or your eyes. Socialism has been on the retreat everywhere as global corporations continue to increase their influence and power. The middle class is too content eating at McDonalds, shopping at Wal-Mart, and watching American Idol everyday to demand change.

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