In response to Donald Trump’s electoral victory, students at the University of Michigan are planning a campus-wide class walkout Wednesday afternoon. They’re demanding segregated campus space for students of African-American descent.
The event is hosted by Students 4 Justice at The University of Michigan, a group of students “who organize to target inequities
“Trump is a product of white supremacy,” their Facebook page outlining the message of the protest states. “White supremacy is responsible. . . The University must place the safety of its students first and foremost. Most of a University’s population now have their lives at risk. The University must protect us with every power it has available.”
To keep students safe, the group is demanding the university provide separate but equal facility spaces on campus for black students.
The University of Michigan must provide funding and paid staffing positions for a Black space on campus specifically designed as a recreational and safe space for Black people at the University. The University must offer more academic support services for Black students. Resources for protecting Black students cannot be channeled to University police. The police, as a union, has endorsed Trump. Placing us in the police’s care is an act of anti-Black violence.
The idea of segregating black students isn’t anything new. Until 1954, states were allowed to pass laws establishing separate educational facilities for black and white students as long as they were “equal.” The Supreme Court determined in a unanimous ruling that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal,” and required states to integrate public schools — a huge victory for the civil rights movement.
University of Michigan students aren’t the only college protestors demanding separate campus facilities for African American students. At the University of California-Berkeley, students slapped eviction notices on a campus store last month and demanded the building be re-purposed for students of color and people who label themselves LGBTQIIA+.
You can read the entire list of demands here.