Yesterday evening approximately two hundred University of Central Missouri students gathered outdoors on campus to protest Donald Trump and an earlier incident on campus.
After initially gathering at the Speaker’s Commons (including two instances of fireworks fired into the crowd and a small group of Trump supporters chanting “build that wall”) the crowd moved to the mall in front of the Student Union. A portion of that crowd moved out further into campus, marching to the Multipurpose Building where they were harassed by individuals in two pickup trucks. As of last night police were still looking for the vehicle and driver who drove into the crowd.
Earlier in the day via Twitter in response to an incident, from University of Central Missouri President Chuck Ambrose:
Chuck Ambrose @UCMAmbrose
@UCentralMO cares about every student’s experience & welfare. Hate is not tolerated. Treat others as you want to be treated everyday.
10:17 AM – 10 Nov 2016
After the students returned to the mall from the Multipurpose Building UCM President Chuck Ambrose held an open forum for students starting at 8:00 p.m. in the Union. Before the forum he spent time on the mall speaking with students.
President Ambrose spoke to the students and spent over an hour and a half answering their questions and listening to their concerns.
UCM President Chuck Ambrose: …I’d like to do two things if we could. I’d like to just say some comments, just a few. And I want to, I promise you a conversation. So, a matter of fact, I will tell you something – that I feel more earnest as a president of UCM, I, in dialogue with you, am looking for as many answers as you are. And so, I’ll confess to you as fifty-five year old white male that the weight of social change, the things that are happening in the world, certainly events this week, I don’t have as many answers, by far, as I do questions. And one of the big questions, obviously, is where do we go from here.
But there’s three things I want to, to really underline and they’re the three reasons that I specifically wanted to have an opportunity to talk with you directly. But they’re also three things that I want you to know are important to us as a university going into the future. Right, so it’s not just a reaction to, to today, or yesterday, or this week.
There’s three things that,that are very important. One, is I’m very proud of your activism. I’m very proud of your passion. I think we have talked, for those of you who have been here more than one year, it is very important in this world to activate. When you have cares, concerns, passion, anxiety, fear, and more importantly, social justice, equality, equity – you know activating that sense of purpose, regardless of your perspective. And I’m just gonna confess something to you as president of the university, I really expected this degree of passion and activism over the last several weeks, right, leading up to a semester that had a presidential election with as much emotion….
….I got a tweet a little earlier tonight, “I can’t believe UCM is allowing a protest.” Well, a college campus is a great place [laughter] to have a protest, right? [cheers, applause] I mean, that’s part of being an American. It’s a guaranteed constitutional ability for us to allow you to express yourselves….
….Our responsibility is just to provide you a safe place, a safe campus, a safe community where you can express yourselves. And we’ll work to do that because I imagine that this isn’t the last evening that you’ll want to express yourselves. And I know not everyone will share my view, but I think it’s a good thing that you have the opportunity to make your voice heard. And as I look at you guys, thinking about that generational passing of the world, I’m real hopeful that your passion and compassion for each other and for this world and the country is activated….
UCM police provided some update on the incidents earlier in the evening and asked for information to help identify the parties involved.
A short early morning conversation (November 10, 2016)
Donald Trump (r) – expect this for the next four years (November 10, 2016)