From the Los Angeles Times below is an article that makes evident how the violence against the Trump rally in Chicago was part of the ongoing Safe Spaces from microaggressions campus movement, such as the Yale freakout over Halloween costumes.
Of course, Safe Spaces has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with the territorial imperative. Young people naturally feel the urge to fight turf wars, to stake out territory and drive out enemies. Normally in America we have laws to regulate the competition for property so territorial urges don’t turn into mob rule. But over the last year minority college students have increasingly asserted that they must be above the law because racism. It’s the only way they can be safe.
What we’re seeing at UIC is the balkanized future of America in which The Diverse can only come together over fear and loathing of whites. Hating whites is the KKKrazy Glue of the coalition of the fringes.
When black, Muslim and Latino student activists at the University of Illinois at Chicago heard last week that Donald Trump was planning a rally on campus, they did what any good organizers do in 2016: They went online.
Let me briefly point out that the UIC Pavilion is not a secluded hideaway, but a major, freeway-close public venue on Eisenhower Expressway just west of the Kennedy Expressway and the Loop. For example, I saw Prince there in 1983 with a mostly black crowd and the Pretenders and Iggy Pop there in 1986 with an all white crowd.
“As an undocumented UIC graduate student, I feel unsafe knowing that Trump along with his followers will be at my university,” organizer Jorge Mena wrote in an open letter to the school’s administration. “We already face systemic violence but we’re increasingly becoming targets of attack by his followers on and off Trump’s campaign trail.”
Amalia Pallares, a political science professor involved in the effort, said she believes Trump’s divisive rhetoric is inconsistent with the university’s values of inclusion. “We didn’t feel this was the right venue for this kind of event,” she said in an interview.
So the violent protesters shutting down a public political gathering were engaging in self-defense, since everybody knows from watching TV that Trump supporters are Ku Klux Klanners and Nazis, so violence is okay. It’s self defense of Safe Spaces.
Planning for the event started Monday night, when leaders from a range of groups gathered in a campus lecture hall. They included the Black Student Union, the Muslim Student Assn. and the Fearless Undocumented Association, which advocates for immigrants in the country illegally.
Tess Raser, an organizer with Assata’s Daughters, a group of black women that has protested police violence, said her organization saw the protest as an opportunity to connect Trump’s racist rhetoric with institutional racism in Chicago.
The demonstration kicked off Friday afternoon, with a rally on campus where Muslim and Latino immigrant students spoke. Protesters then marched to the rally site carrying a banner that read: “Trump makes America hate. Our students make America great.”
When Trump officials announced that the candidate wouldn’t be appearing because of security concerns, the crowd erupted, said B. Loewe, an organizer with a Latino group called Mijente, who was present at the rally. Trump supporters were angry, he said, and protesters were celebrating.
Organizers of the demonstration and Sanders said Saturday that the protest was not in any way officially affiliated with his campaign, despite claims from Trump on Twitter that it was “Clinton and Sanders people who disrupted my rally.”
“As is the case virtually every day, Donald Trump is showing the American people that he is a pathological liar,” Sanders said in a statement. “Obviously, while I appreciate that we had supporters at Trump’s rally in Chicago, our campaign did not organize the protests.”
Tia Oso, national coordinator for Black Alliance for Just Immigration, which works with Black Lives Matter activists, said protests of Trump rallies “will most certainly” continue in the months ahead.
In parts of the world where many UIC students come from, university campuses are traditionally Safe Spaces — i.e., lawless sanctuaries closed off to the police. For example, when Fidel Castro was a student activist at the U. of Havana, he would venture off campus to commit crimes and then roar back to the college, where the police weren’t allowed to follow him. This helped make life in Havana vibrant. This Latin American tradition hasn’t spread explicitly to the U.S. yet, but Safe Spaces is a harbinger of this.
P.S., Here’s an amusing article by an unnamed writer way back in 1963 in the Harvard Crimson:
More than three quarters of the students at the Central University of Venezuela live in or around the city of Caracas. But for those who prefer campus life there are two attractive and inexpensive ($8 a month) dormitories in the heart of the University city. The women’s residence is affectionately called Hollywood while the other, its male counterpart, bears the name Stalingrad.
Like their World War II comrades, Venezuela’s Communists have made their stand in the bowels of Stalingrad. Unlike their Russian colleagues, however, the University Communists have no tanks for defense. They need none. The barbed wire fence surrounding the University City and the autonomy guaranteed by the University’s Charter suffice for protection. The charter stipulates that the University is to be run entirely by an internal, faculty-student council and national authorities (such as the Ministry of Education, the Police, and the Army) are prevented from entering the school grounds without a court order.
University autonomy is by no means a phenomenon unique to Venezuela. It is a practice employed to a certain degree throughout Latin America. The history of the idea dates to a student strike and subsequent convention in Cordoba, Argentina, in 1919. Protesting against the ancient and restrictive control of university life by the Church, the Cordoba students staged a noisy walkout against scholastic officialdom. The result was an independent charter for the school. The student congress that took place in Cordoba under the new grant cited the principle of university autonomy as the end of all educational reform.
… Since 1957 UCV’s budget has grown from $6 million to $20 million annually. But once this money has been awarded to the University, the Ministry of Education exercises no further direction on its use. The University Council exercises sovereign control over the campus and all that pertains to it. The 19-man Council consists of the Rector, the Vice-Rector, the University Secretary, the 11 Deans of the faculties, three students, one graduate, and a representative of the Minister of Education. All Council positions are elective and are the subject of energetic partisan politics. The elections are dominated by tightly organized student political parties.
The Communists, who have long been powerful within Venezuela’s school system, are the strongest single group at UCV. Communist intellectuals have made a point of infiltrating the school’s faculty where they can speak without fear of reprisal. The student body as well contains numerous trained Communists and professional students who work to mobilize fellow travellers. Famed for its Marxist teachings and pro-Soviet attitude, the school of Economics is cryptically called Moscow while the comparatively apolitical faculty of Architecture sports the title Guantonamo.
The Communists at UCV are a minority but, as always, their activities bring more notoriety than their numbers seem to merit. The cumbersome legal process necessary to enter the University has prevented the police from obtaining much incriminating material in their periodic searches. There is good evidence, though, that the Louvre’s impressionist paintings, kidnapped while being displayed in Caracas’ Museum of Fine Arts, travelled directly to the men’s dormitory in the University City. Further, it is believed that the hijacking of a plush Venezuelan oceanliner earlier this year was plotted at the Central University. Terrorists have been traced to the Ciudad Universitaria time and again, prompting speculation as to how much fire power is amassed behind UCV’s ivyless walls.
The Central University suffers understandably from a poor reputation as an institution of higher learning. Politicking, rioting, and bomb scares managed to keep the school closed for three months last year.