UC-Davis Chancellor Forms Task Force On Pepper Spray Incident; Says "video is chilling to us all"

Sacramento Bee:

The UC Davis chancellor called Saturday for a review of the events that led to 10 arrests and pepper spraying of apparently non-violent protestors on the campus Friday. [. . .]A task force review and report "will help inform our policies and process within the university administration and the UC Davis Police Department to help us avoid similar outcomes in the future," Katehi's statement said.

Better work quick because:

The students, meanwhile, expect to return to the quad in greater numbers Monday[.]

Chancellor's "letter" to the university community:

As indicated in various videos, the police used pepper spray against the students who were blocking the way. The use of pepper spray as shown on the video is chilling to us all and raises many questions about how best to handle situations like this.

(Emphasis supplied.) The Chancellor's spokesperson was not "chilled" by the use of pepper spray and the head of the campus police was PRESENT when the pepper spray was used and remarked that her people did a great job. Obviously the "chill" the Chancellor identifies appears to have evolved after the reaction she felt from the criticism she has received.

< UC-Davis Officials React To Pepper Spraying Incident | Davis Faculty Association Calls For Ouster Of UC-Davis Chancellor >
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  • Display: Sort:
    When will they get (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:19:36 PM EST
    that things like this will only serve to grow the revolutionary movement?

    I hope (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by lentinel on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 06:05:19 PM EST
    that is the result of this. We need a revolutionary movement.

    We have lived in an America that suppresses dissent for quite awhile now.

    Intelligent discussion is also a dinosaur.


    America is (none / 0) (#12)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 06:09:48 PM EST
    a revolutionary movement.

    At least, it was...


    Typical: A Task Force. (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by KeysDan on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:24:31 PM EST
    When in a tight spot, our leaders don't know if they should call a meeting or call a cab.

    No comment (none / 0) (#3)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:30:17 PM EST
    Until our task force completes their very serious work of looking into this incident and returns their report.

    Do you think "Task Forces" (none / 0) (#4)
    by KeysDan on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:37:10 PM EST
    are better than "Blue Ribbon Committees"?  I am a Super Committee man, in case you are wondering.

    Heh. (none / 0) (#5)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:53:13 PM EST

    A well-known Washington lobbying firm with links to the financial industry has proposed an $850,000 plan to take on Occupy Wall Street  and politicians who might express sympathy for the protests, according  to a memo obtained by the MSNBC program "Up w/ Chris Hayes."

    The proposal was written on the letterhead of the lobbying firm Clark  Lytle Geduldig & Cranford and addressed to one of CLGC's clients,  the American Bankers Association.

    CLGC's memo (PDF) proposes that the ABA pay CLGC $850,000 to conduct "opposition research" on Occupy Wall Street  in order to construct "negative narratives" about the protests and  allied politicians.

    MSNBC today: Exclusive: Lobbying Firm's Memo Spells Out Plan to Undermine Occupy Wall Street (VIDEO)


    Calling James Carville (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by NYShooter on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 03:56:55 PM EST
    Fire up the Ole "War Room," Snakehead.

    A Super A task force review and report (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by koshembos on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 04:35:56 PM EST
    The chancellor treats everyone like idiots. I didn't send the police to attack the students; he did.

    How about changing the role of the police so they cannot act against students.

    Progress. (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by lentinel on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 06:00:08 PM EST
    Kent State 1970.  Nixon is president. Protesters are shot.
    UC Davis 2011. Obama is president. Protesters are pepper-sprayed.

    We've come a long way.

    Um, have you seen the videos from (none / 0) (#18)
    by nycstray on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 08:16:53 PM EST
    Occupy Berkeley?

    This video.....no words (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by NYShooter on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 06:53:01 PM EST
    I saw it, I still can't believe it, my mind just won't process it.

    Another time, long ago, another place, far away, an Asian pow, hands bound, an Asian "officer," pistol in hand, barrel pushing pow's head obliquely, and before your eyes even focused on the picture, POP!! Brains and blood. A grunt, exhale, then a lump on the ground. Just like that.

    That was war, there was a reason.

    Then here, Rodney King. A pack of bloodthirsty hyenas, wretched sociopaths, clubbing and bashing with joyful, savage abandon, reminiscent of the Ape scene at the beginning of 2001, a space odyssey. An equal number of L.A's finest, milling and watching as if it were a street craps game.

    There was a reason, naked, uninhibited racism

    But this....children sitting as if waiting for marshmallows to be passed out. A sub-human cretin, with the smug cover of immunity, the imprimatur of authority, reaches out, cannister filled with toxic, airborne, unbearable pain shoots our sons and our daughters in their faces, with more joy than an exterminator killing rodents under a sink.

    This will be the poster a half century from now defining today, as that asian one a half century ago defined it.

    There's no going back. The battle has been joined.  

    It's going to get much worse (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 07:11:22 PM EST
    before it gets better, I think.

    We are dealing with a very desperate power structure.

    I have seen my share of revolts, insurgencies and revolutions, from the guerrilla conflicts in the 1980s in Central America to the civil wars in Algeria, the Sudan and Yemen, to the Palestinian uprising to the revolutions in East Germany, Czechoslovakia and Romania as well as the wars in the former Yugoslavia. George Orwell wrote that all tyrannies rule through fraud and force, but that once the fraud is exposed they must rely exclusively on force. We have now entered the era of naked force. The vast million-person bureaucracy of the internal security and surveillance state will not be used to stop terrorism but to try and stop us.

    Despotic regimes in the end collapse internally. Once the foot soldiers who are ordered to carry out acts of repression, such as the clearing of parks or arresting or even shooting demonstrators, no longer obey orders, the old regime swiftly crumbles. When the aging East German dictator Erich Honecker was unable to get paratroopers to fire on protesting crowds in Leipzig, the regime was finished. The same refusal to employ violence doomed the communist governments in Prague and Bucharest. I watched in December 1989 as the army general that the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu had depended on to crush protests condemned him to death on Christmas Day. Tunisia's Ben Ali and Egypt's Hosni Mubarak lost power once they could no longer count on the security forces to fire into crowds.

    The process of defection among the ruling class and security forces is slow and often imperceptible. These defections are advanced through a rigid adherence to nonviolence, a refusal to respond to police provocation and a verbal respect for the blue-uniformed police, no matter how awful they can be while wading into a crowd and using batons as battering rams against human bodies.

    -- Chris Hedges, This Is What Revolution Looks Like


    That's what I'm afraid of, Edger (5.00 / 3) (#15)
    by Zorba on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 07:21:34 PM EST
    I lived through the Vietnam War protests, Kent State, Jackson State.  I participated in the protests.  We were all more than aware "That could be us."  Yet we persevered.  I can only hope that it doesn't get that bad before changes are made, but I am not optimistic.  Think also of all the martyrs of the Civil Rights movement, before their goals were achieved.

    A good primer (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by NYShooter on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 07:45:37 PM EST
    But, like snowflakes, no two dictatorships are alike. Empires rise and fall, dictatorships rise and fall. Unfortunately, often times there's a long spread between the rise and the fall. As an example, may I point to North Korea.

    My personal belief is that the second American Revolution will evolve, rather than explode. Every good hearted American, who believes an optimistic future can once again be an American ideal had better hunker down, and understand, that it will be a long seige, not instant gratification.

    What OWS has done for us all, was simply show us that, at least, it is possible.

    That's good enough for me, and for that, I will always be grateful to those wonderful, brave kids.       


    I think that (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 07:55:50 PM EST
    everyone whose consciousness is "raise-able" would probably be quite prepared to "hunker down, and understand, that it will be a long seige, not instant gratification".  Many of us have been at this for more than forty years, since the 60's, and have learned about patience.

    The people who will lose power though, the "establishment" will not patiently watch their power and privilege be nibbled away at.

    They get scared easily, and things like today happen.

    Then they wheel out the guns, as they get more scared.


    help us avoid similar outcomes in the future? (none / 0) (#7)
    by Edger on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 04:03:46 PM EST

    "help us preemptively stop protests from taking place so these awful incidents putting our peace officers in mortal danger don't happen in the first place"

    Quite a month for University administrators. n/t (none / 0) (#10)
    by lilburro on Sat Nov 19, 2011 at 06:03:51 PM EST

    Quite a more than a year, actually (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by Towanda on Sun Nov 20, 2011 at 07:15:28 PM EST
    as this is not new now, peeps.

    The militarization of campus police, and awful incidents, dates back at least a year.  (See ongoing discussions on the Chronicle of Higher Ed comments and fora.)

    So this is another thing for which to credit the OWS movement, as it comes to campuses:  Now, others are noting what has been noted on campuses for more than a year now.

    The thinking is that campus police (often state patrol at public universities) also must have come into some of that Homeland Security money to get new toys, and when they've new toys, they're just itching to use them.

    (In one case from a year ago that I recall, though, it was intriguing that the militaristic head copy who trotted out all sorts of new equipment to use on students -- after one allegedly threw a snowball, omigod, the horror! and not even thrown at the campus cops -- then admitted that perhaps the students had not heard the order to cease and desist throwing snowballs -- not that more were thrown, nor necessarily even the one -- because the campus cops' megaphone didn't work.  That sort of toy was 'way too low-tech to get, when all you had on your wish list was tasers, rubber bullets, pepper spray, etc. . . .


    "More than a year" (none / 0) (#20)
    by sj on Mon Nov 21, 2011 at 05:01:58 PM EST
    It makes me wonder what exactly Nathan Brown was referring to in his call for Katehi's resignation.  This was very gutsy for an untenured Assistant Professor (emphasis mine):
    Your words express concern for the safety of our students. Your actions express no concern whatsoever for the safety of our students. I deduce from this discrepancy that you are not, in fact, concerned about the safety of our students. Your actions directly threaten the safety of our students. And I want you to know that this is clear. It is clear to anyone who reads your campus emails concerning our "Principles of Community" and who also takes the time to inform themselves about your actions.