This morning I was at Bally's at 87th and State when one of guys (who knows I teach at CSU) says to me in the locker room, "Well, I see someone at CSU has got the students doing things they would not otherwise be doing. Someone must have put them up to it." We discussed his idea, and I certainly defended the students.
But that is not the purpose of this post. The purpose is to point out the effect of the media blitz and of the political connections of the trustees and their allies. They have a base on the streets of the South Side that is a threat to our struggle to change the university in a positive way. They are getting out their message that the faculty are having a bad effect on the students and are otherwise not doing their jobs. We ignore the street opinion at our own risk, and I believe the risk is great.
In a comment to an earlier post, I suggested leafletting some of the churches on the South Side, particularly ones where the trustees have a base. I don't know if that is the best proposal or if there is another approach, but I feel we cannot win this struggle unless we reach out off campus to make our case. We don't control the media that folks on the South Side are tuned into (at least this seems to be true). We have to get our message out in some way. What do you think?