EntertainmentGlobal student protests prompt university concessions, Macklemore's anthem

Global student protests prompt university concessions, Macklemore's anthem

Student protests continue at European and American universities.
Student protests continue at European and American universities.
Images source: © @V_of_Europe

5:52 PM EDT, May 10, 2024

Universities in Dublin and Barcelona have agreed to demands from protesting students, making their voices heard on various issues, including support for Palestine. In several places, pro-Palestinian protests have encountered resistance. In a related development, rapper Macklemore has made waves with a new "protest anthem."

On May 8th, merely five days after its establishment, a pro-Palestinian tent city at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, was no more. Police didn't enact its removal, a common fate for student protests against Israel's actions in the Gaza Strip, but by the decision of the Irish university's authorities. They conceded to the protestors' demands, choosing to terminate collaborations with Israeli companies.

Dublin and Barcelona universities meet protestors' demands

On Wednesday, the University of Barcelona's Senate backed a motion endorsing the students. This motion advocates for the cessation of all academic and institutional relationships with Israel, affecting partnerships with universities, research institutes, corporations, and other entities within the country. The Senate, comprising all department heads, forwarded this proposal to the university's governing board for further action.

Students protest elsewhere in cities like London, Cambridge, Oxford, Paris, Lausanne in Switzerland, and Ghent in Belgium. In contrast, a student protest in Amsterdam was forcibly dissolved by police on May 8th. University of Amsterdam faculty members publicly expressed their disapproval of the harsh treatment peaceful protestors received from university and municipal officials.

Amsterdam and Berlin see protests forcefully ended

Anthropologist Martijn Dekker voiced this outcry on the X platform, among others, and stated, "y." Police employed dogs, pepper spray, and bulldozers against the protestors. A demonstration by lecturers is slated for May 13th on the campus.

Protests were dismantled in Berlin at Humboldt University, Free University, and Berlin University. Student activism persists in the United States, as is evident at prestigious institutions like Harvard, MIT, Yale, and Princeton. Successful negotiations have occurred at universities, including Rutgers, Northwestern, Brown, Middlebury, Evergreen, and Vassar. Columbia University's protest was shut down by police on May 18th, kickstarting a global wave of solidarity tent cities for Palestine.

Macklemore unveils a song inspired by student protests

On May 7th, American rapper Macklemore released a poignant track that vividly captures student protests, their suppression by authorities, and the silence of celebrities and musicians on Palestinian issues. Macklemore boldly critiques the lack of engagement in his lyrics, saying, "I want a ceasefire, f*ck a response from Drake."

The song also highlights the renaming of Hamilton Hall at Columbia University to Hind's Hall by protestors in memory of Hind Rajab, a six-year-old casualty of conflict in January 2024. Despite Israeli officials' denials of their involvement in her death, evidence, including recorded conversations and testimonies from Palestinian medics, supports the claim. Grateful for the support, Hind's mother told ajplus.net, "I started crying because I wanted all of these movements & support to come while Hind was still alive."

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