Friday, November 20, 2009

Did We Suddenly Go Back To 1969?

Is Nixon in the White House again? Then again, I guess it was only a matter of time before the UC Berkely students decided to take over something. This time its Wheeler Hall. How many times does this make it that Wheeler Hall has been taken over by students and is this now a record for a school building most often lost to protestors?

So what are they protesting? Darfur? Nope. Arab terrorism? Nope. American Imperialism? Nope.

They're protesting having to pay for their education.

Horror beyond belief I know.

Reminds me though of a funny story. Back in the 1960s, I forget which year, the students at the University of Cambridge decided that the Americans and French were having too much fun with their sit-ins and takeovers of school buildings to protest Vietnam and the rest of the social ills. So the student revolutionaries decided that they would take over Senate House. They figured by grabbing Senate House, which is where the University is headquartered, that they would bring the University to a halt.

Only one problem with that theory. The University of Cambridge works on a federal type system that has been analogized as being very similar to Switzerland's. Yes, its one university. No, its actually many different entities. Yes, the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor are in charge of the university. No, the member colleges don't have to actually adhere to anything. Its weird, wacky, and fun.

What it all meant was that a bunch of student revolutionaries grabbed the Senate House, and inconvenienced almost no one. According to a professor who was a student at the time, you had to really be aware that it even happened at all.

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