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Freedom Budgeters Occupy Pres’ Office

There’s never a dull or unembarrassing moment at Dartmouth College. A few days ago, the Freedom Budget students’ plan to occupy President Hanlon’s office leaked onto the Internet. Everyone knew about the plan, except, it seems, the College’s Safety & Service security force:

Freedom Budget Slumber Party.jpg

The FB students have now put their plan into effect, and they have issued the following press release:

We, a group of around 30 Dartmouth students outraged by our administration’s inadequate and oppressive response to The Freedom Budget, are staging a sit-in of President Hanlon’s office until he provides a point-by-point response to the items in the Budget, including first steps of how to enact the Budget.

We delivered The Freedom Budget to campus and the administration on February 24, demanding “that President Hanlon, affiliated offices, and those addressed in this letter reply to us via The Dartmouth newspaper by March 24, 2014.” President Hanlon’s and Interim Provost Martin Wybourne’s op-ed response in Dartmouth Now on March 6 was inadequate in scope, did not address the vast majority of points in The Freedom Budget, and was released the day before finals, upon which The Dartmouth stopped printing, such that student response was virtually impossible.

Our sit-in is our response; our physical, vigorous, and positive action. The burden should not lie with systematically oppressed students (affected by racism, classism, imperialism, nativism, sexism, heterosexism, cis-sexism, and ableism) to ensure our own well-being, safety, and continued existence at Dartmouth College: yet our lived experiences at Dartmouth have been so violent that we were driven to write a plan for such assurance — The Freedom Budget. The least the College must do is seriously address the points that our communities found most essential to our health and indeed our survival.

Our bodies are already on the line, in danger, and under attack at Dartmouth. We are now using them to occupy the President’s office until he accords us the basic respect of serious, point-by-point, actionable response.

No justice, no peace.

Here is a knitted-together panorama of the entire scene:

FB Comp.jpg

You will note President Hanlon and Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson seated at the conference table. They are displaying strong leadership in response to the forceful entry and criminal trespassing of the Freedom Budget crew. Of course, all 35 students showed up during President Hanlon’s open office hours that take place from 4-5pm, but by now they have overstayed their welcome.

Addendum: Here is The D’s initial report.

Addendum: For Dartblog connaisseurs who might think that this post is an April Fools’ Day joke, it is not, even if the occupation of Phil Hanlon’s office is, and his undoubtedly craven response-to-come will be. Come on, Phil! Surprise us and throw the rascals out. Let them know that Dartmouth College already bends over backwards and forwards to accommodate students of color.

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