This Saturday, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will be the commencement speaker at the University of Michigan, quite a departure from last year when President Obama was the speaker. A massive protest is being organized that involves a rally as well as action by the students themselves.
The protest rally is being organized by the Washtenaw Community Action Team, Working Michigan, Ann Arbor Education Association, University of Michigan Campus Dems, Lecturers’ Employee Organization, Graduate Employees’ Organization, Huron Central Valley Labor Council, Univ of Michigan All Campus Labor Council, Washtenaw Coalition for Economic Justice, and a wide variety of other labor and community organizations.
Labor and community groups from all over southern Michigan will rally on Saturday, 4/30 at 8 am at the Pioneer HS football stadium, (across the corner of Stadium Blvd and Main St from Michigan Stadium). Come admire the plane circling overhead trailing a banner (courtesy of UM nurses, “Snyder: Some cuts never heal!”) Come be economically oppressed by the Two Koch Brothers Comedy Improv Troupe (guard your money!) BYOS (bring your own sign). BYFF (bring your family and friends). Our Facebook page is HERE
- We have free parking for carpoolers next to PiHi stadium. Enter from 7th Street (between Stadium Blvd and Scio-Church Rd). Look for the “Rally Parking” sign and rally marshalls will wave you to your parking lot. Once the free lot is full, you can enter the PiHi lots from Main St, but you will pay $5 to support the PiHi Booster Club (a very worthy cause). Come early if you want to park for free. Map is HERE.
- We expect a some charter buses. We have parking reserved for charters, also along 7th Street (park in the two “buses only” lanes).
- The Two Koch Brothers will entertain by Pioneer stadium’s entry gate beginning at 7:30. The stadium’s bathrooms will be open for public use.
- Graduating UM seniors will speak first, 8:00 – 8:15, then leave to go to their staging area to enter the Big House.
- Speakers from labor, public service, and community groups will speak will speak 8:15 – 9:00, with a few sets of entertainment included
- We’ll have a moment of silence for the residents of Benton Harbor, MI, the first Michigan city to have it’s government taken over by an appointed state manager.
- We’ll march along the sidewalk to Michigan Stadium after 9:00, and become thousands circling the Big House. Rally marshals will lead the way and help us cross the Stadium/Main intersection safely. Once we surround the Michigan Stadium, we will chant and distribute leaflets, making sure to respect this special day for the graduates and their families as they arrive. It’s a very big day in their lives! Thank them for supporting Michigan public education (before Snyder Inc. shuts it down!)
See you at Pioneer HS football stadium by 8:00 am on Saturday 4/30! For more information, please contact Brit Satchwell of the Ann Arbor Education Association at [email protected] or the UM Graduate Employees Organization at [email protected]. See you on 4/30 rain or shine!
You can find out more information HERE.
In addition to this, students at University of Michigan will be holding a silent protest where they turn their back on Governor Snyder during his speech.
When Rick Snyder first visited the University of Michigan as a high school senior about 35 years ago, an academic counselor wanted him to enroll so badly that the counselor found a way to get Snyder into the university a semester early — a rare move at the time.
Now, as Snyder prepares to deliver U-M’s spring commencement address Saturday morning before a crowd of about 40,000 people at Michigan Stadium, the reception by the university community is shaping up to be far less welcoming.
Amanda Caldwell, chairwoman of the U-M College Democrats, said students should turn their backs on Snyder to “send a message to him.”
The protesters are angry at several of Snyder’s proposals, including a 4 percent cut to public school funding, a 15 percent to 22 percent cut to higher education, a $1.7 billion business tax cut, $300 million in new taxes for senior citizens, and a new law that gives additional powers to emergency financial managers.
Hope to see you in Ann Arbor on Saturday!
I’m just sayin’…