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The all-purpose Columbia University hunger strike

By Michelle Malkin  •  November 9, 2007 11:15 AM

You can never really have a moonbat convergence focused on just one issue or objective. Organize a protest against the war in Iraq–and you’ll get Mumia abu Jamal worshipers, Truthers, Darfur saviors, and open-borders reconquistadores. Intellectual incoherence starts early. Check out the hunger strike now under way at Columbia University.

Five students are foregoing nourishment and camping on the south lawn of the main Morningside Heights campus. Ostensibly, it’s in response to the unsolved mystery of the noose-hanging at the university’s teachers’ college nearly a month ago. Never mind that the investigation is still underway and no suspects have been named. They’ve larded up their grievances with complaints about a campus expansion plan, Lee Bollinger’s treatment of Iranian nutjob Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and a push for more funding of pet p.c. departments.

The presumption of white guilt infuses the hunger strikers’ demands :

We demand a Core Curriculum that is inclusive not only of the canon of Western European thought, but that seeks to build a deep understanding of the multicultural society that we live in and the power relations that constitute it.

We demand a sustainable expansion that does not displace 5,000 people and bulldoze a neighborhood in Harlem, one of the most important communities in the United States.

We demand an administration that is responsive to institutional racism, supports its students, and proactively works to create a climate in which nooses and swastikas are not the order of the day.

We demand support and autonomy for the Ethnic Studies program, which is crucial to a critical intellectual experience in a progressive university.

Until now, our demands have been ignored. Now we strike. Students are launching a HUNGER STRIKE to transform our university. We need YOU to make this a success.

If nothing else, parents paying exorbitant amounts of money to send their kids to Columbia can rest assured they are being taught well the rhetoric of entitlement and self-absorption:

From the center of Butler Lawn. Day one gone. The evening of day two is approaching. The hunger strikers have slept their first night, outside and subsisting solely on water, electrolytes and the love of friends and adherents to the demands. We have had a number of questions over the past two days, and we write this letter to begin to answer some of those questions, and continue the conversation around these issues.

The question that most frequently arises is, “How are you feeling?” All of us are in different states but on the whole, there are the hunger pains, a slight light headedness and fatigue. All of us however are out and about, attending our classes and taking exams, talking with those who approach our tent. Also interacting with those who last night attended the first of the nightly vigils in support. Today again there was a rally at the sundial, and statements were shared in solidarity. These showings have been crucial for the other thing we are feeling is the cold of being outside, and it is the growing strength of the movement that keeps us warm.

Another question we often get is, “What do you need?” So many have kindly offered blankets, sleeping bags, tea and other material needs. We have appreciated every offer, and feel that our material needs are being well looked to. One level of support that can be extended is providing inspiration for us to continue – think art, music, good conversation, does anyone have a boombox?

Does anyone have a boombox?

It’s the new “Don’t Tase Me, Bro!”

***Update: Stealing this from commenter Delosworld…New Columbia moonbat rallying cry: “Don’t Feed Me, Bro!”***


Because our cause is multi-faceted, our demands call for change on all levels and ask for a spectrum of responsibility:

• a more systematic response to hate crimes from Public Safety
• a more collaborative expansion effort from the administration
• a revision of the Core that encourages critical engagement with issues of racism and colonialism
• more resources and support for the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race (CSER), the Institute for Research in African-American Studies (IRAAS), and the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA).

Gimme, gimme, gimme.

The editorial board of the Columbia Spectator student publication attempts to distance itself from the desperate, unfocused grievance-mongers, but concludes that the administration should capitulate anyway:

…the broadness and impracticality of some of the strike’s demands do not give the University a free pass to ignore the issues at hand. In particular, Columbia should consider reforming the major cultures requirement by including a course in a seminar format that focuses on the issues of racialization and colonialism. Such a change ought to be accompanied by overall reforms to the Core Curriculum to make it more inclusive and representative of “non-Western” viewpoints. Likewise, the Office of Multicultural Affairs is severely understaffed—something the University should acknowledge and make moves towards addressing. Most importantly, Columbia should recognize that a decision to stop eating is a desperate act. It must work with the strikers to give students voices enough weight that future generations of Columbians don’t feel they have to stop eating to be heard.

Parting words via the NYSun tell you all you need to know about these melodramatic publicity-seekers:

Two sophomores at Barnard College and three Columbia students last ate Tuesday evening and said they would not break their fast until the school committed to a core curriculum that includes a seminar addressing issues of “racialization and colonialism,” among their other demands.

“I’m already hungry,” a senior at Columbia, Bryan Mercer, 22, said yesterday, less than 24 hours into the strike.

Oh, not to worry. If this hunger strike is anything like Cindy Sheehan’s last fast, they’ll all be gaining weight.

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Categories: Education