Expanding movement - Page 3

Day of Action started on UC campuses, but it's grown to encompass wider calls to fund public education and services

Collette Crutcher and Carlos Baron show off a puppet that will be part of mass street demonstrations March 4.

That's very scary," to the administrators the movement is targeting, he added.

That focused pressure on UC administrators sets these students apart from the coalition of UC Berkeley faculty members and student government members and allies who are coordinating bus trips to protest in Sacramento March 4, he explained. "Sacramento's not innocent, but it's not like the administrators are just doing what they have to do," he charged, pointing to new construction projects on campus even as workers are hit with layoffs and furloughs, plus an increasing trend of privatizing on-campus jobs and services. "You can save the public sector by pouring money into it. But it won't work if the people in charge ... want to privatize everything."

Jasper Bernes, a graduate student in English who was seated next to Cantor, noted that the occupation tactic is catching on at other campuses. "I have no doubt that March 4 will greet us with news of many occupations," he said.

Baron, the Chilean theater professor, noted that some SF State students had occupied a business school building in protest of budget cuts. "They were pissed," he said. "They wanted to do something radical. They really inconvenienced a lot of people — but they took chances nonetheless. I went there, and I locked arms with them for awhile." At the same time, he wondered about how effective it was, he said.

And for all the months of preparation and visioning, Baron said he also wonders what will ultimately be borne out of the marches, rallies, pickets, and procession of lovingly crafted street puppets he helped breathe life into. For all the hard work and planning, he says, "My problem is not so much March 4. It's March 5."