Update Dec 14, 2011: I apologize for not disclosing my involvement with Occupy Princeton in this post. In the interest of full disclosure, I have been attending the General Assemblies and support the movement but was not a part of these mic checks. As a blog, not a newspaper, there is room for some opinion on the Ink and for writers to report on issues they are connected to. However I absolutely should have disclosed my affiliation and I apologize.
We know, we know. Princeton is apathetic. Politically, we are unengaged. Well, Occupy Princeton doesn’t seem to have received the message. Having held General Assemblies on Frist North Lawn since November 17, they occupied JP Morgan/Chase and Goldman Sachs info sessions Wednesday and Thursday nights. Their message? That sending roughly 10% of our graduates into finance goes against our motto “in the nation’s service and service of all nations.”
Dressing in business attire, about 20 students infiltrated the two info sessions, looking like they were interested students. At the end of Wednesday’s session, senior Derek Gideon yelled “Mic check!” and followed with Occupy Princeton’s speech call-and-response style. Senior Sandra Mukasa led Thursday’s mic check.
In an email sent to Occupy Princeton after the Wednesday info session, Derek told the occupiers who had been unable to attend:
The mic check at the end was awesome- the look of shock on their faces was priceless, especially as we all walked out and they realized more than half of us were protestors- and then I heard the woman leading the session declare, “Well, it’s getting close to 7…”
Though they realize they are unlikely to change the minds of anyone at the info sessions, Occupy Princeton hopes to start a discussion on campus by disrupting and bringing publicity to the info sessions. Occupiers told the Prince:
“Our goal is to open up a discussion at the University level,” said Luciana Chamorro ’12 …. “The idea is that it will spread.”
“My personal goal is to raise awareness,” occupier Robert Joyce ’13 said. “We’re young. These are some formative years. We’re around very smart people and this is our chance to challenge our views.”
The question is, on a campus known for its political apathy, will they get a positive response? Though, with about 50 people in the group, I guess they’ve proved that we’re not all Whitney Blodgetts.
The next General Assembly is Tuesday. Find the words from the mic checks after the jump.