The Baystate Objectivist

The Baystate Objectivist

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Second Card Rally


Sorry about not posting yesterday, the day turned strange (as my days are prone to do) and there was no time for blogging. However, yesterday I did attend the second lunchtime rally in less than a week at UMass to protest the granting of an honorary degree to former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card.

There is some speculation that Card intends to challenge Massachusetts' washed-up U.S. Senator John Kerry next year, and no doubt the University would like to be on his good side should Card win. However, the protesters are primarily motivated not by partisanship but by Card's support of the Iraq War.

The crowd was about the same size as the rally last week, a disappointment to organizers who had publicly predicted a larger turnout. Frankly, my impression is that for the vast majority of UMass students the Card appearance is a non-issue. However, what the protesters lacked in numbers they more than made up for in enthusiasm, as it was a much more energetic rally than last week.




Conspicuous in their absence were the UMass conservatives, who had a lively presence at the last rally but had no organized counter-protest yesterday. I did however see these people with a sign showing African dictator Robert Mugabe, the blood-thirsty socialist whom UMass gave an honorary degree to in the 1980's. Where is the leftist outrage over this far more obviously inappropriate degree?



I asked the sign holders whether they were allied with any organization and they said no, stating, "We only want to see people held accountable."

For some reason there was less of a media presence than last week, although the gentleman on the left below was from National Public Radio, which had not covered the first rally. The person on the right is a UMass journalism student who is quizzing the radio reporter about his job. Most of the students are looking for work this time of year!



Here is a video I made of when the students shut down the Whitmore Administration building, then prepared to march over to annoy the Graduate Dean at the Goodell building.



Finally, it is hard to be too angered by the defacing of this mailbox in Northampton, when the vandal is so artistic about it!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Tom,

Another year has passed for the UMass Republicans. We were very busy this year, and I'm glad that you were there to cover most of it. We worked hard to get our point-of-view out there.

You covered our week long event for Veterans Day. We assembled a group of flags on the campus lawn, each one symbolizing a veteran on campus. We then sold yellow ribbons for whatever donation the donor wanted to give, and we raised almost $500 for Disabled American Veterans. We took some crap from left-wingers, including the insufferable James Fiorentino. But it was well worth the effort. As you noted in your blog, one silly leftist decided to deface one of our signs with the inscription "Glorify Violence! (Smiley Face)"

We had the Mike Adams event that you covered in November. I designed the flyer to be provactaive, and boy did it work! The men in dresses were amazing! Feminism is certainly a sacred cow of the Left, and we always enjoy skewering their sacred cows. Great job with the pictures and the video. That video has made the rounds of the internet several times over. Dr. Adams remarked afterwards that he has never been to such a hostile campus in his life, and he still features his "Planet UMass" article prominently on his website.

At the end of December, we had to have a special election because our president, Lauie Belsito, graduated a semester early and moved to Washington, DC. I was elected president of the club, a position that would have turned the a lesser man's hair white. It's hard work being the president of one of the most active student organizations on campus.

In February, we had Erik Svane come in from France to talk about anti-Americanism. I was slightly disappointed with Erik's presentation, but it was okay. Incidently, Erik spoke about Nicolas Sarkozy, and why he represents the best hope for better Franco-American relations. At the time, I knew next to nothing about Sarkozy, but he is now the president of France, and I hope he lives up to his billing. Someone ought to tell Jacques Chirac not to let the door hit him on the ass on the way out.

Several members of the club travelled to Washington DC in March for the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). You posted my photographs on your website. For a political junkie such as myself, CPAC was pure bliss. I will probably continue to go to CPAC every year for as long as I live. Unfortunately, I will not have the student discount next year, so it will be significantly more expensive.

In April, we hosted a discussion on the Iraq War between political science professor Wolfang Brauner and professor of military leadership and commander of the UMass ROTC program, LTC David Vacchi. We had a good turnout.

On May 1st, we had our main event of the year, General Georges Sada, a former Iraqi general under Saddam Hussein and advisor to at least one prime minister of Iraq. He's probably the most knowledgeable person I have ever met on Iraq. I spent the entire day with the general, picking him up at the airport, bringing him to his hotel, having dinner with him afterwards. He is a fascinating man, to tell the least. He remembers when Saddam first made a name for himself in 1958, when he attempted to kill the leader of Iraq, Abdul Karim Qassim. General Sada was a young man in Iraq's air academy at the time. Whatever question you may have about Iraq, he is the one to ask. Putting together that event was a lot of work, but it was worth it.

The week after that, the Republicans collaborated with the UMass Students for Life to erect the abortion graveyard on the campus lawn. We just wanted to remind people that there are victims of abortion--about 48 million of them in this country alone. That project was also a lot of work. We anticipated vandalism, so we took the crosses in each night so that the vandals wouldn't have the chance. We only allowed the crosses to be outside when there was someone out there at the table. Later that week, we also had a pro-life video.

So we've been busy. Next semester is my last, and I will not be the president of the club. I decied not to run for reelection, and I left the club in the capable hands of Brad DeFlumeri, a Navy veteran, and occasional contributor to the Daily Collegian. I'm sure that next semester will be nearly as busy as this one.

Be prepared for a repeat of the Veterans Day event. We are also shooting for two speakers next semester--David Horowritz and Phyllis Schlafly. Nothing is set in stone there, so that could change.

Well, thanks for keeping up with us!

BEN DUFFY
(former) President, UMass Republicans