Morning Wood: Protestors protesting protestors protesting

By Morning Wood Staff

(Justin Surgent/Daily Collegian)
(Justin Surgent/Daily Collegian)

The University of Massachusetts Amherst campus has seen a growing number of protests over previous years, but none as large as the gathering last Friday. Over 4,000 students and community members gathered at the steps of the Student Union in protest of protesting.

“I was just glad to get out and have my voice heard on these important issues,” said one protester. “Whether it be police brutality, the arrival of a distinguished and well-spoken orator at the university sent to speak on behalf of differing political viewpoints, or a demand to see the Chancellor’s tail, there’s always a reason to make a sign and scream things into a megaphone in front of these steps to block student’s access to the classes that they pay for.”

Put on by the Students for Fascist America, the protest was originally created to protest protesting, but soon protestors protested a protest against protestors. The club’s president spoke briefly at the rally, though he wasn’t understood because of the constant chanting from the crowds.

“People need to hear what we have to say,” said one young man holding an unintelligible sign, “even if they don’t want to hear it. Like, if they have headphones in? I’ll rip those out of their ears. And if they disagree? I’ll just keep yelling until they give up. That’s what free speech is all about.”

Signs in the protestors’ hands covered a multitude of social causes, ranging from fossil fuel divestment, fossil fuel investment, fossil fuel re-vestment and the necessary introduction of social security for pets, seemingly unaware that the protest was in fact against protesting as a whole.

Students from Our Socialist University were there as well, apparently unaware of the group putting on the event. They spoke of a universal economic sharing program, and began enacting their ideas by taking down some large signs and breaking them into pieces small enough that each protestor could hold a 1-by-1 inch square.

At the rally, a thin young woman holding a “Fack Fracking” sign was seen in full spirit, and was asked by Morning Wood reporters how she felt about the issues.

“Fracking is awful and UMass needs to do something about it. I’m fully confidential [sic] that if we get enough people to make signs and chant here in front of the Student Union, we will make all the difference. Sunshine and rainbows are the fuel of the future, long live the queen.”

When asked to explain the implications of fracking, the same protestor responded only with, “It should always been done with protection.”

After the interview, a non-protestor asked her what her sign had to do with the protest at hand, a rally against free speech in America hosted by the Students for Fascist America. After a moment of blank stare, she returned to chanting: “What do we want? Free lunch. When do we want it? Lunchtime!”

Brian Fantana would like to remind you if you’d like to attend a future protest, please don’t. He can be reached by following the stench of a used diaper filled with Indian food.