Fed Up with the Violence at University of Michigan

We are fed up with the violence that is being committed at the University of Michigan by those with power. Fed up with our bodies being used for the benefit of those at the top.

Fed up with a university administration and athletic department that has violently acted for 4 years to cover up and suppress the details surrounding football player Brendan Gibbons’s rape of an 18-year old UM female student in November 2009.

Fed up with the top administrators’ silence on Brendan Gibbons’s violent use of this woman’s body for his pleasure in order that they could continue using the body of one of UM’s athletes to bring in large profits that feed into their exorbitant salaries.

Fed up with how the university’s promotion of a culture of immunity for those high in its hierarchy of power fosters the perpetuation of rape across campus.

Fed up with the 12 forcible rapes on campus property, 7 forcible rapes on non-campus property, 2 forcible rapes on public property, and 12 forcible rapes in campus residency halls that were reported in 2012.

Fed up with the university’s violent exploitation of the bodies of its staff (71% of whom are women) to extract as much labor as possible from them with as little consideration as possible for their humanity.

Fed up with how, on Tuesday, January 28th, staff had to choose either to travel to work and risk exposure of their bodies to frostbite or to lose the day’s salary.

Fed up with Mary Sue Coleman defending her and other executives’ six figure salaries (the top 16 executives make $7.49 million in base pay) while claiming that the university has to limit its spending and thus fire, uproot from their offices, and dock the pay of long-term staff members.

Fed up with the entire process of Administrative Services Transformation (AST) as a calculated scheme of fear, intimidation and threats in which staff are completely left in the dark about their future possibilities to have a career at UM and must follow a humiliating process of re-selling the labor capacities of their bodies if they are able to be considered for re-hire or a severance package.

Fed up with astronomical executive salaries and administration declarations of the importance of diversity when the only multicultural space available is an off-campus run-down building that lacks funding and visibility and has been placed on the university’s periphery, just like the students of color that the university claims to support.

Fed up with how the university has used black and brown bodies on their pamphlets and advertising materials in order to give the appearance that UM supports diversity, when in reality, students of color—not UM—are the ones actively struggling for diversity to be taken seriously within the often-hostile environment of the university.

Fed up with how the university has consistently broken its promises since 1970 to increase black enrollment to 10 percent. In fact, these promises were only made in the first place as a result of direct actions led by students of color.

Fed up with bodies of color being the targets of campus and Ann Arbor police and of stereotypes, racial slurs, and incredible underrepresentation, and thus misrepresentation, in university classrooms, residence halls, and departments.

University of Michigan administrators and executives, we are fed up with your university.

It’s now time to make it our university. It’s time to fight to take back our bodies for ourselves. Since you have demonstrated to us that the only thing you recognize is our bodies, it appears that we will have to use our bodies to demonstrate something to you.

We will have to join together and stand-up, sit-in, and speak-out until you begin to take seriously (through actions and not empty words) that we control our bodies and our university.

(Photo via the Michigan Daily)

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11 thoughts on “Fed Up with the Violence at University of Michigan

  1. As has been noted by two Assistant US Attorneys the University of Michigan could be prosecuted under RICO if law enforcement authorities were not participating in a cover up. We need citizen demands for Grand Juries and indictments now.

    • You should ask the university if the Michigan athlete in this story (the one whose face appeared for three years on the Big House video board) is Gibbons. And if the timing of this story (three weeks before the university decided to expel him) had anything to do with his punishment.

      And if it is Gibbons, did the university look into the SECOND allegation of sexual assault in here? If it’s not Gibbons, who is the athlete and was he punished?

      Don’t let them get away with claiming they didn’t know about this article. There’s no way that the administration there was unaware of claims of multiple sexual assaults by an athlete made in a Daily article.

      http://michigandaily.com/article/sexual-assault-campus

  2. I truly earned my stripes at the Unity for Gallaudet protest in 2006. 136 got arrested, including yours truly and much more went on than what has been documented online. I lend you all my moral and maybe physical support!

  3. when do you guys ever have time to study? there are half a dozen conspiracies in here. looks like the humanities faculty have trained you puppets really well. DH

    • You are an embarrassment to yourself and a shame to your family Mr. Harper. We aren’t talking about magic bullets or UFOs here and who are you to question whether the writer of this blog has time to study? Indeed it seems to be you, sir, who is the puppet of the athletic department.
      This case is sickening to me as an alumni (BMA music theory 2002). I am dismayed and horrified by these events and will no longer be supporting the football team in any way (which really bums me out, I LOVE UM football) until the athletic department admits to their wrongdoing and fires the coaching staff. I believe self-imposed scholarship reduction is also appropriate.
      Lastly, I would normally say that at least I would have the assurance that someone as ignorant as yourself could never be a UM alum, Mr. Harper, but sadly, this incident proves that is a flawed belief.

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