• Petitioned University of California Board of Regents

This petition was delivered to:

University of California Board of Regents
Finance Chair, Board of Regents
Bruce D. Varner
Chair, Academic Senate University of California
Robert Anderson
Appointed Regent, Ruiz Foods
Fred Ruiz
Appointed Regent
David Crane
Member of Board of Regents
Eddie Island
President, University of California
Mark Yudof
Member of Board of the Regent
Russell Gould
Member of Board of Regents
George Marcus
Member of the Board of Regents
Leslie Shilling
Member of Board of Regents
Judith Hopkinson
Member of the Board of Regents
D'Artagnan Scorza
Ex Offcio Member of Board of Regents
Debbie Cole
Member of the Board of Regents
Paul Watcher
Member of Board of Regents
John Hotchkis
Member of Board of Regents
Sherry Lansing
UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi
UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi
Chairman of Board of the Regents
Richard Blum
Ex Offcio Member of Board of Regents
Karen Bass
Attorney General
Kamala Harris
California Governor
California
Gov. Gavin Newsom

Police Pepper-Spray Peaceful UC Davis Students: Ask Chancellor Katehi to Resign!

    1. David Buscho
    2. Petition by

      David Buscho

      San Rafael, CA

(Please support David Buscho, one of the UC Davis students pepper sprayed by police, in signing this letter from Assistant Prof. Nathan Brown asking for Chancellor Katehi's resignation. Letter first posted by Brooklyn-based activist Scott Wooledge who reports on Occupy Wall Street activities and LGBT issues for Daily Kos under the handle Clarknt67.)

Join University of California at Davis Assistant Professor Nathan Brown in calling for the resignation of UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi for her failure to protect UC Davis student's First Amendment right to assemble, or even their physical safety.

Nathan Brown's Open Letter To The Chancellor is below:

Open Letter to Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi

Linda P.B. Katehi,

I am a junior faculty member at UC Davis. I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of English, and I teach in the Program in Critical Theory and in Science & Technology Studies. I have a strong record of research, teaching, and service. I am currently a Board Member of the Davis Faculty Association. I have also taken an active role in supporting the student movement to defend public education on our campus and throughout the UC system. In a word: I am the sort of young faculty member, like many of my colleagues, this campus needs. I am an asset to the University of California at Davis.

You are not.

I write to you and to my colleagues for three reasons:

1) to express my outrage at the police brutality which occurred against students engaged in peaceful protest on the UC Davis campus today

2) to hold you accountable for this police brutality

3) to demand your immediate resignation

Today you ordered police onto our campus to clear student protesters from the quad. These were protesters who participated in a rally speaking out against tuition increases and police brutality on UC campuses on Tuesday—a rally that I organized, and which was endorsed by the Davis Faculty Association. These students attended that rally in response to a call for solidarity from students and faculty who were bludgeoned with batons, hospitalized, and arrested at UC Berkeley last week. In the highest tradition of non-violent civil disobedience, those protesters had linked arms and held their ground in defense of tents they set up beside Sproul Hall. In a gesture of solidarity with those students and faculty, and in solidarity with the national Occupy movement, students at UC Davis set up tents on the main quad. When you ordered police outfitted with riot helmets, brandishing batons and teargas guns to remove their tents today, those students sat down on the ground in a circle and linked arms to protect them.

What happened next?

Without any provocation whatsoever, other than the bodies of these students sitting where they were on the ground, with their arms linked, police pepper-sprayed students. Students remained on the ground, now writhing in pain, with their arms linked.

What happened next?

Police used batons to try to push the students apart. Those they could separate, they arrested, kneeling on their bodies and pushing their heads into the ground. Those they could not separate, they pepper-sprayed directly in the face, holding these students as they did so. When students covered their eyes with their clothing, police forced open their mouths and pepper-sprayed down their throats. Several of these students were hospitalized. Others are seriously injured. One of them, forty-five minutes after being pepper-sprayed down his throat, was still coughing up blood.

This is what happened. You are responsible for it.

You are responsible for it because this is what happens when UC Chancellors order police onto our campuses to disperse peaceful protesters through the use of force: students get hurt. Faculty get hurt. One of the most inspiring things (inspiring for those of us who care about students who assert their rights to free speech and peaceful assembly) about the demonstration in Berkeley on November 9 is that UC Berkeley faculty stood together with students, their arms linked together. Associate Professor of English Celeste Langan was grabbed by her hair, thrown on the ground, and arrested. Associate Professor Geoffrey O’Brien was injured by baton blows. Professor Robert Hass, former Poet Laureate of the United States, National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner, was also struck with a baton. These faculty stood together with students in solidarity, and they too were beaten and arrested by the police. In writing this letter, I stand together with those faculty and with the students they supported.

One week after this happened at UC Berkeley, you ordered police to clear tents from the quad at UC Davis. When students responded in the same way—linking arms and holding their ground—police also responded in the same way: with violent force. The fact is: the administration of UC campuses systematically uses police brutality to terrorize students and faculty, to crush political dissent on our campuses, and to suppress free speech and peaceful assembly. Many people know this. Many more people are learning it very quickly.

You are responsible for the police violence directed against students on the UC Davis quad on November 18, 2011. As I said, I am writing to hold you responsible and to demand your immediate resignation on these grounds.

On Wednesday November 16, you issued a letter by email to the campus community. In this letter, you discussed a hate crime which occurred at UC Davis on Sunday November 13. In this letter, you express concern about the safety of our students. You write, “it is particularly disturbing that such an act of intolerance should occur at a time when the campus community is working to create a safe and inviting space for all our students.” You write, “while these are turbulent economic times, as a campus community, we must all be committed to a safe, welcoming environment that advances our efforts to diversity and excellence at UC Davis.”

I will leave it to my colleagues and every reader of this letter to decide what poses a greater threat to “a safe and inviting space for all our students” or “a safe, welcoming environment” at UC Davis: 1) Setting up tents on the quad in solidarity with faculty and students brutalized by police at UC Berkeley? or 2) Sending in riot police to disperse students with batons, pepper-spray, and tear-gas guns, while those students sit peacefully on the ground with their arms linked? Is this what you have in mind when you refer to creating “a safe and inviting space?” Is this what you have in mind when you express commitment to “a safe, welcoming environment?”

I am writing to tell you in no uncertain terms that there must be space for protest on our campus. There must be space for political dissent on our campus. There must be space for civil disobedience on our campus. There must be space for students to assert their right to decide on the form of their protest, their dissent, and their civil disobedience—including the simple act of setting up tents in solidarity with other students who have done so. There must be space for protest and dissent, especially, when the object of protest and dissent is police brutality itself. You may not order police to forcefully disperse student protesters peacefully protesting police brutality. You may not do so. It is not an option available to you as the Chancellor of a UC campus. That is why I am calling for your immediate resignation.

Your words express concern for the safety of our students. Your actions express no concern whatsoever for the safety of our students. I deduce from this discrepancy that you are not, in fact, concerned about the safety of our students. Your actions directly threaten the safety of our students. And I want you to know that this is clear. It is clear to anyone who reads your campus emails concerning our “Principles of Community” and who also takes the time to inform themselves about your actions. You should bear in mind that when you send emails to the UC Davis community, you address a body of faculty and students who are well trained to see through rhetoric that evinces care for students while implicitly threatening them. I see through your rhetoric very clearly. You also write to a campus community that knows how to speak truth to power. That is what I am doing.

I call for your resignation because you are unfit to do your job. You are unfit to ensure the safety of students at UC Davis. In fact: you are the primary threat to the safety of students at UC Davis. As such, I call upon you to resign immediately.

Sincerely,

Nathan Brown
Assistant Professor
Department of English
Program in Critical Theory
University of California at Davis

Recent signatures

    News

    1. UC Davis Pepper Spray Investigation Lead By Group That Works For Wall Stree

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      Robert Meister, head of the Council of UC Faculty Associations, called for University of California president Mark Yudof to swap out Kroll Security Group and its chairman William Bratton as the ones in charge of the investigation.

      Meister, who is also a political science professor at UC Santa Cruz, said Kroll has already been hired as a security consultant for UC campuses, and has a conflict of interest in conducting an "independent" review of policies they may have helped put in place.

    2. UC Davis students calling for general strike against tuition hikes Read mo

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      The University of California regents are scheduled to hear from the public for at least an hour at 9 a.m. today at four locations, including UC Davis.

      David Buscho and hundreds of other students are in attendance!

    3. Reached 100,000 signatures
    4. John Pike, U.C. Davis Police Officer, Accused Of Anti-Gay Slur

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      John Pike, California's infamous pepper-spraying police officer, has an anti-gay past, according to reports.

      Read more below:

    5. UC Davis chancellor: Police defied my orders by using pepper spray

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      UC Chancellor Linda Katehi is now putting full blame on the police. While the police should be held accountable by firing or resignation, Katehi must also resign. If she does not, it sends the message to all UC Chancellors that there are no consequences for their actions.

    6. UC Davis English Department Calls for Katehi's Resignation

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      The faculty of the UC Davis English Department supports the Board of the Davis Faculty Association in calling for Chancellor Katehi’s immediate resignation and for “a policy that will end the practice of forcibly removing non-violent student, faculty, staff, and community protesters by police on the UC Davis campus.” Further, given the demonstrable threat posed by the University of California Police Department and other law enforcement agencies to the safety of students, faculty, staff, and community members on our campus and others in the UC system, we propose that such a policy include the disbanding of the UCPD and the institution of an ordinance against the presence of police forces on the UC Davis campus, unless their presence is specifically requested by a member of the campus community. This will initiate a genuinely collective effort to determine how best to ensure the health and safety of the campus community at UC Davis.

    7. UC Davis Chancellor apologizes for pepper spray incident against protesters

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      "I am here to apologize," an emotional Katehi said, after struggling through the crowd to a small stage where students among the group pepper-sprayed by police had just described their ordeals. "I feel horrible for what happened," she added.

    8. Reached 75,000 signatures
    9. UC Students, Faculty, Call for UC Davis Chancellor's Resignation

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      In just a few days, more than 65,000 people have joined the campaign led by UC Davis student David Buscho, calling for the immediate resignation of UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi after student demonstrators were brutally pepper-sprayed while...

    10. UC Davis Police Chief Placed on Leave

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      UC Davis announced today that the chief of the campus Police Department has been placed on administrative leave pending a review of officers' use of pepper spray against protesters. UC Davis Lt. Matt Carmichael will serve as interim police chief.

      “As I have gathered more information about the events that took place on our Quad on Friday, it has become clear to me that this is a necessary step toward restoring trust on our campus,” said UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi.

    11. Reached 50,000 signatures
    12. Two Officers Placed on Leave, Davis PD Distances Themselves from UC Police

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      The Davis PD wants to clear up confusion about their role in what happened between the Occupy UC Davis demonstrators and campus police on Friday.

      “The City of Davis and the City of Davis Police Chief exercise no authority over the UCDPD,” said Lt. Paul Doroshov of the City’s PD. “While Davis PD officers were called to assist UCDPD officers, they arrived late in the operation, were in a support role only, and used not force on protestors, including pepper spray.”

    13. Reached 25,000 signatures
    14. Outrage Over Police Pepper Spraying Students

      Jonathan Perri
      Deputy Campaign Director

      As video spread of an officer in riot gear blasting pepper spray into the faces of seated protesters at a northern California university, outrage came quickly — followed almost as quickly by defense from police and calls for the chancellor's resignation.

      University of California Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi said in a statement Saturday she was forming a task force to investigate the police action and the video images she said were "chilling."

      However, a law enforcement official who watched the clip called the use of force "fairly standard police procedure." Read more here... http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-57328289/outrage-over-police-pepper-spraying-students/

    15. Reached 20,000 signatures
    16. Davis Faculty Association Board Calls for Katehi’s Resignation

      Eden James
      Petition Organizer

      The DFA Board calls for the immediate resignation of Chancellor Katehi. More at the link below...

    17. Reached 12,500 signatures
    18. See the video of cops pepper-spraying peaceful students below.

      Scott Wooledge
      Petition Organizer

      This is your responsibility Chancellor Katechi. These students are in your care.

    19. Reached 25 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • George Thomas FRAZIER PARK, CA
      • over 2 years ago

      I invite U C President Mark Yudof, Chancellor Katehi, U C Davis Chief Annette Spicuzza, Lt. John Pike and the other Officer who pepper-sprayed the non-violent students, at U C Davis to join me. I will sponsor California's First Spray-In For Understanding the Dilemmas Facing Higher Education. I will provide a MK-9 pepper spray canister and antidote for each guest and myself. I will also provide food, beverages and a video crew to record our increased understanding.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Brennan Hampton FULLERTON, CA
      • over 2 years ago

      Hello, I am offering cheap to no-cost graphics to various sites. I will complete any type of design from user titles, buttons, and data entry forms to website graphics and banners. If you are in need of ANY type of graphic and not looking to pay much (or possibly nothing at all), Please contact me at [email protected] and we can discuss a lot more. Also looking for a more long-term designer job if you have more graphics needed and appreciate my work.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Rhonda Winn TRAVERSE CITY, MI
      • over 2 years ago

      The STUDENTS are the CUSTOMERS. If you don't understand this than RESIGN. This is heartbreaking and sickening to watch.

      STOP pepper spraying our FUTURE.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Joan George ANDERSON, IN
      • over 2 years ago

      I support peaceful protest. I am outraged for all students and other protesters who have been victims of police violence. This is supposed to be the United States. Chancellor Katehi needs to learn of the history of protest on campus and allow students to express their freedom of speech.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • KASEY REVELS CHAPIN, SC
      • over 2 years ago

      Police brutality on a college campus is outrageous. We attend college to express ourselves, our rights, and to achieve a higher level of intelligence. College is a place to thrive and experience, not beaten and arrested. Calling in that riot police force was so beyond unnecessary.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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