ASUN organized a couple hundred UNR students to protest higher ed budget cuts, according to the RGJ. The budget crisis is serious and the German program I received my degreee from may already be gone. (Fyi, I'm Chris Bayer. I don't know how they messed that up. Everyone knows that what's left of my German is badly Swabian.)
It's good to see such a staid campus get up and fight for something, especially something as unsexy as a state budget. I am glad ASUN is focusing its efforts at state lawmakers, whom it can certainly influence, rather than at larger or more global issues that would attract a wider audience but have zero impact. Assemblywoman Debbie Smith (D-Reno) said as much.
“When I see people take time out of their day to do something like this, you bet it influences me,” Smith said. “I think the energy we saw from the youth in our state during the presidential election is carrying forward. You know, they may be students but they’re taxpayers. They have a voice and they have a say.”
Smith, however, probably opposes the LuvGuv's higher ed cuts anyway and the other lawmakers present, David Bobzien and Senator Bernice Matthews, are Dems who were never going to support such cuts either. The trick is whether a protest like this will catch the attention of moderate Republicans like Senators Townsend or Raggio. Hopefully, ASUN is lobbying those and other legislators behind the scenes.
Amazingly, it took 10 paragraphs to get to the 60s reference.
The demonstration resembled student protests on campuses nationally in the 1960s during the war in Vietnam. But while at times as loud, it was much more peaceful.
Note to babyboomer conservatives: Almost nothing references Vietnam anymore. The Kids These Days are not hippies. Certainly not the kids at UNR.
(The article also helpfully revealed the $1,665 ASUN spent busing protesters in. I mean, we wouldn't want anyone getting the impression that these hippies had self-initiative here...)