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Help fight racism and protect free speech at UCSC
by UC Activist Defense Committee
Wednesday May 30th, 2007 1:46 PM
Fellow UC Alumni -

We are writing to ask you to join us in supporting the UC Activist Defense Committee's campaign in defense of Alette Kendrick. Alette was targeted as a Black woman and a central organizer of the student speak-out that took place on Oct. 18, 2006, resulting in her arrest. The Office of Doug Zuidema, Student Judicial Affairs, has now announced its intention to suspend Alette for a period of 3 years—essentially a sentence of expulsion for the third year student. For more information on her case, please visit our website http://www.ucactivistdefense.org and read her personal narrative.

Alette is now being denied her constitutional right to a lawyer and a trial before a jury before her peers. Her hearing will be closed to the public, and judged by a panel of three faculty and two students. Student Judicial Affairs stalled for six months, and then notified Alette that her hearing would take place on June 6th, right in the middle of finals and just before undergraduate students will be leaving for the summer and so unable to rally in her defense. A three-year suspension would be the worst penalty ever given by the UCSC administration for political activism, and a precedent that would seriously endanger student free speech in the years to come.
alumni_letter.pdf_600_.jpg
***PLEASE FORWARD FAR AND WIDE!***

Fellow UC Alumni -

We are writing to ask you to join us in supporting the UC Activist Defense Committee's campaign in defense of Alette Kendrick. Alette was targeted as a Black woman and a central organizer of the student speak-out that took place on Oct. 18, 2006, resulting in her arrest. The Office of Doug Zuidema, Student Judicial Affairs, has now announced its intention to suspend Alette for a period of 3 years—essentially a sentence of expulsion for the third year student. For more information on her case, please scroll down to read her Personal Narrative, and visit our website http://www.ucactivistdefense.org.

Alette is now being denied her constitutional right to a lawyer and a trial before a jury before her peers. Her hearing will be closed to the public, and judged by a panel of three faculty and two students. Student Judicial Affairs stalled for six months, and then notified Alette that her hearing would take place on June 6th, right in the middle of finals and just before undergraduate students will be leaving for the summer and so unable to rally in her defense. A three-year suspension would be the worst penalty ever given by the UCSC administration for political activism, and a precedent that would seriously endanger student free speech in the years to come.

PLEASE TAKE ACTION TO DEFEND ALETTE! Alumni can support can support the campaign in the following ways:

1. Tell the Chancellor and Student Judicial Affairs what you think of racist repression.
PHONE:

You can call the chancellor at 831-459-2058, Doug Zuidema in Student Judicial Affairs at 831-459-4447

Here's a sample script you may want to use:

"Hello, my name is __________ and I graduated from __________ college in _____. I'm calling to demand that all academic charges against Alette Kendrick be dropped immediately to prevent the university from harming her any more than it already has. The police attack on Alette was racist and completely unjustified, and we will not tolerate this attack on free speech at our university."

SNAIL MAIL:

Attached as a pdf document, you will find a sample Alumni letter to the chancellor. Please print it out, sign it, and send it to Chancellor Blumenthal with CC to Doug Zuidema at these addresses:

George Blumenthal
Office of the Chancellor
200 Clark Kerr Hall
University of California
1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064

Doug Zuidema
Office of Student Judicial Affairs
245 Hahn Student Services
University of California
1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064

EMAIL:
You can also email chancellor [at] ucsc.edu, dzuidema [at] ucsc.edu, and Jean Marie Scott, Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs: jmscott [at] ucsc.edu

2. Spread the word.
Please forward this message to your alumni friends and faculty contacts before you leave the computer today. facebook, myspace, or friendster may also be useful tools.

3. Use your influence
If you are a member of an alumni association, explore passing a resolution in solidarity with Alette. The UCSC undergraduate and graduate student governments have already done so. If you have ideas about mobilizing alumni, please contact the defense committee: ucadsolidarity [at] gmail.com

4. Stay Informed
You can sign up to receive periodic campaign updates, read more, and download petitions, letters, and posters etc. at http://www.ucactivistdefense.org


In solidarity and deep thanks,
-ryan wadsworth
ryanrain [at] gmail.com 510.712.6422

UC Activist Defense Committee
http://www.ucactivistdefense.org ucadsolidarity [at] gmail.com

***********************************
A Personal Narrative By Alette Kendrick
http://www.ucactivistdefense.org/background
***********************************

*****************************
Sample letter from alumni
*****************************

George Blumenthal
Office of the Chancellor
200 Clark Kerr Hall
University of California
1156 High St
Santa Cruz, CA 95064


Acting Chancellor Blumenthal:

We are writing to express our outrage over and opposition to the unjust intention to suspend Alette Kendrick for a period of 3 years, in essence a sentence of expulsion, for participating in the October 18th protest. As Alumni, we will not tolerate racist repression at our Alma Mater.

We understand the use of police force and repression against student activists, especially female student activists of color, as representative of the hostility, antagonism, and violence that underrepresented student populations often face at UCSC and in the community. We understand the harsh ‘punishment’ specifically being sought against Alette Kendrick as endorsing the climate and expression of anti-Black aggression and intimidation. We oppose the University’s intent to punish any of our fellow students and activists, especially female activists of color, for exercising their political rights, for expressing dissent, and for practicing their right to assemble (rights the University would now seek to abridge as well). Chancellor Blumenthal, we urge you to stop any University process that would result in the suspension of Alette Kendrick.

In the wake of the October 18th protest, a memorandum issuing from your office circulated throughout the campus and expressed approval for the police response to the student protest. Such an endorsement hurt Black students at UCSC not only because it justified the dehumanizing treatment of Alette, but because it corresponded with long legacies of police brutality toward Black people, it expropriated a Black woman’s body to demonstrate the power of the state/University, and it rationalized the racial profiling and harassment so many Black UCSC students have experienced from the police.

Support of the police response through academic suspension is akin to the racist messages recently written on the bathroom walls of Baskin Engineering. It indicates the University’s participation in rendering underrepresented students, especially Black students, susceptible to the state-sanctioned or extralegal production and exploitation of group-differentiated vulnerability to premature death. By this we mean that the University has participated in the use of racial profiling to make Alette the target of the police response, has leveled severe charges and punitive measures, has subjected her to the racist and sexist criminal court system, and has created a climate of racial terror/intimidation. All of these University responses have produced conditions that isolate, exploit, and harm Alette, other Black students and students of color at UCSC.

After all, UCSC’s continued refusal to address student concerns about the lack of infrastructure for students of color (lack of faculty of color, curricula, funding for student initiated outreach/retention, etc) is an indication that UCSC’s expressed principles of community and commitment to diversity are purely rhetorical. UCSC’s continued endorsement of the police’s actions as well as UCSC’s intent to essentially suspend Alette Kendrick fundamentally proclaims UCSC’s active commitment to racial profiling, police brutality, the increase in the number of prisons, the growth of the prison population, state-sanctioned intimidation and repression, and the justification of violence.

If UCSC would truly like to abide by its stated principles of community and commitment to diversity, it must eliminate any intent to suspend Alette academically. Failure to do so would leave us with no choice but to withhold all future financial support for UCSC.


Sincerely,


Cc: Doug Zuidema
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
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TITLE AUTHOR DATE
I have a dreamBorderRavenMonday Jun 4th, 2007 8:58 AM
Angela Davis or notBecky JohnsonSaturday Jun 2nd, 2007 3:50 PM
not stupidnot beckyFriday Jun 1st, 2007 12:35 PM
Can't we be accurate here?Becky JohnsonFriday Jun 1st, 2007 7:57 AM

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