“Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!”: A protest for equality hits the student union


Lizzie Kibler

Protesters take over Student Union during lunch time.

Lizzie Kibler, Reporter

“What do we want?”


“When do we want it?”


The Student Union was filled with students lying down on the floor chanting every few minutes for equality in light of the recent Ferguson and Staten Island police brutality incidents. The protest took place Friday at lunch time when the Student Union is most crowded.

“I thought it was a sleeping flash mob,” Anna Rose Deleon Guerrero, junior theater major, said. “But I think it’s really beautiful. They are laying down peacefully and that’s really beautiful.”

Crowds of students surrounded the protesting group with cell phones and video cameras. Most of the chatter was confusion about the event while some expressed their opinions openly. Many students and faculty such as Jeff Iker took part.

One man was heard shouting, “White power!” as he moved through the protest.

“I hope the reaction is that it caught a lot of people’s attention,” Morgan Bell, an integrative studies junior who planned the entire event, said.

“Yesterday we had a moment of silence outside the SU and Brandelyn Tosolt mentioned a teach-in (a general educational forum on issues of the public interest). We’re doing a teach-in all next week,” Bell said. “And I was like we have to do something else.”

Bell then made fliers for the event and originally put that it was going to be a lay in.

“I sent it to one of the e-board members and they said that we should do a die in,” Bell said. “So I got it together real quick over… Social media.”

“It’s a human issue. It is about race , it is about  LGBTQ issues, it is about undocumented individuals,” Bell said. “It bothers me that some people don’t want to do anything about it… I’m still shaking. I just feel like it’s time for us to do something, especially our age group and everyone in general.”

Other students commented on the protest in support.

“I feel like it’s necessary,” SiennaMarisa Brown, sophomore psychology/sociology major said. “We can make a difference… I think it’ll turn into a much needed social movement.”

Autumn Boehmer, sophomore, doesn’t see these types of events stopping anytime soon.

“I think there’s a lot more to come,” Boehmer said.

The protest ended at around 12:50 pm.
“Why are all these people dying for being themselves?” Bell said.