CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Black Lives Matter students at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill recently commandeered a town hall meeting to read off a list of 50 bizarre demands, from free education for all to the abolition of the school’s police forces.
ABC 11 reports a mob of UNC Black Lives Matter students descended on a town hall meeting Thursday called to discuss race relations and condemned the “unethical institution” for its treatment of minorities, and demand action from university officials.
But other students who attended the meeting to engage in a respectable conversation about issue didn’t appreciate their classmates’ tactics, and bemoaned the stunt as a waste of time.
“I don’t think you should be making demands if they’re not feasible,” UNC student Diamonde Henderson told the news site, adding that the group ate up an hour of the two-hour forum reading off the demands. “The purpose of it was so everyone could share all of their ideas.”
Instead, those in attendance got a mouthful from a belligerent throng of several dozen Black Lives Matter protesters, who dressed in black and chanted “We comin, we ready” while banging drums and toting signs.
Once inside, the group presented its outlandish demands in the form of a document titled “A collective Response to Anti-blackness.”
“UNC Chapel Hill is an unethical institution,” the protesters wrote. “From massive labor exploitation across campus to the athletic industrial complex, treating Black and Brown people as less than is essential to the everyday running of UNC. …
“You include Black and Brown bodies in the institution, and mark them with the words ‘diversity,’ ‘inclusion,’ and ‘multiculturalism.’ You throw us on brochures and tout us in statistics. You do this to hid the way UNC would not function where it not for the mass displacement, exploitation, slow death, and genocide of Black and Brown people. We are not trying to integrate into a violent system, while others among our people are suffering both inside and outside the University.”
“Our aspirations are untainted: free tuition via a University open to all, abolition of the police and prisons, free and collectivized housing and food, and more,” according to the document.
It also closed with the warning: “Gone are the days where we ask for what is past due to us: we are here to take what is ours.
“Tear it down, or we shut you down,” the document read.
The list of demands, edited for brevity, include (our favorites in bold):
A mandatory class for everyone, including staff and administrators, about the “historical racial violence of this University and town …”
The immediate firing of UNC President Margaret Spellings because she allegedly referenced “LGBTQIA+” lifestyles as “those lifestyles.”
Abolishment of all standardized testing and its use in college admissions.
Complete dismantling of “athletics industrial complex” and “exploitation of Black men,” effectively ending the men’s basketball and football programs
That “University cafeterias, gym memberships, libraries, and class registration be free to all residents of North Carolina regardless of admittance into the institution.”
Housing and bathrooms that are not segregated by gender.
Collectively-owned housing projects.
Allowing bums to sleep in the school’s public places.
The abolishment of police, both on campus and off, and the implementation of “transformative justice practices.”
The elimination of all tuition and fees, as well as full financial aid for illegal immigrants.
A $25 an hour minimum wage for all Chapel Hill workers, and full benefits for full, part-time, and contracted employees, and similar wages for UNC administrators.
A $25 per hour salary, with benefits, for student athletes.
Free parking and “Go Passes” for everyone.
“Language justice for all workers,” which means “verbal instructions and communication should be made available in addition to written materials for all workers,” according to the document.
A mandate to hire convicted felons whenever possible.
“Equitable funding” for African American, female, and gender studies programs.
Publishing graduation and dropout rates, as well as admissions data – “disaggregated” by gender, race and class – on UNC’s website.
Investigating why black or other minority students leave UNC.
Unlimited free mental health counseling sessions
Divestment of the UNC Management Company from “private jails, prisons and detention centers; Israeli Apartheid; Coal.”
Cancellation of UNC’s contract with Aramark, the food service provider, because the company is allegedly “deeply invested in the expansion of the prison industrial complex” that’s “criminalizing and caging working class Black people.”
A ban on privatizing student stores.
The cancellation of UNC’s contract with Nike and VF Corporation over “deeply exploitative and abusive track records toward workers.”
A mandate to hire black counselors.
The removal of surveillance cameras on the campus’ “white supremacist monuments.”
Removal of the campus’ “Silent Sam” monument and all other “confederate monuments.”
Restricted space on campus for black students to meet.
A plaque denigrating William Saunders, a UNC alum and KKK member honored for his work on the university’s board of trustees.
“Aggressive recruitment of black faculty and faculty of color.”