Tell Pres. Biden: No National Guard on college campuses. Reaffirm the right to protest now!

UPDATE: On May 2nd, President Biden made a public statement in support of the fundamental American right to peacefully protest and rejected calling in the National Guard. This is a good start. But the remarks also demonized campus protesters and failed to call out violent counter-protesters and militarized police attacks on nonviolent protesters.

Over 1,600 arrests have been made on college campuses for participating in protests against the Israeli government’s war in Gaza at dozens of universities across the country. Students, professors, and journalists have been violently detained, often thrown face down into cement and arrested at gun point despite offering no resistance. And counter-protestors have assaulted nonviolent protestors with fireworks, chairs, and bear spray, while police officers have stood by for hours and done nothing to stop it.

Meanwhile MAGA Governors and Republicans in Congress continue to pressure President Biden to call in the National Guard. This is why our pressure on Biden must not stop.

Hundreds of students have recently been arrested for participating in protests against the Israeli government’s war in Gaza at dozens of universities across the country. But blue lights and zip ties aren’t making students on any campus safer, and sending in armed troops will only increase the tensions -- and the potential for tragedy.

We don’t have to guess what that looks like because we already know: At Kent State on May 4, 1970, 28 National Guard soldiers fired into a crowd of thousands protesting the Vietnam War. They killed four students and wounded nine others.

Those protests weren’t so different from the ones we are seeing today. From Columbia to the University of Texas-Austin to the University of California, Berkeley, and back again, young people across the country are exercising their constitutionally protected rights to free speech and assembly to protest horrific violence in Gaza.

President Biden has an opportunity to show the kind of leadership necessary to meet this moment of crisis. As the protests spread, Republican governors could act unilaterally. That’s why your voice is urgently needed today: Will you add your name and help us send the president a clear and crucial reminder that dissent is not a crime, and protest is patriotic?

To President Biden:

I urge you to reaffirm the fundamental right to protest without the threat of a military crackdown.