November 29, 2011
By Naomi Wolf
“The cops love protests. It gives them the opportunity to finally use pepper spray on innocent citizens. Let us not forget what happened at Kent State. Don’t think it can’t happen again because it can.” -KTRN
US citizens of all political persuasions are still reeling from images of unparallelled police brutality in a coordinated crackdown against peaceful OWS protesters in cities across the nation this past week. An elderly woman was pepper-sprayed in the face; the scene of unresisting, supine students at UC Davis being pepper-sprayed by phalanxes of riot police went viral online; images proliferated of young women – targeted seemingly for their gender – screaming, dragged by the hair by police in riot gear; and the pictures of a young man, stunned and bleeding profusely from the head, emerged in the record of the middle-of-the-night clearing of Zuccotti Park.
But just when Americans thought we had the picture – was this crazy police and mayoral overkill, on a municipal level, in many different cities? – the picture darkened. The National Union of Journalists and the Committee to Protect Journalists issued a Freedom of Information Act request to investigate possible federal involvement with law enforcement practices that appeared to target journalists. The New York Times reported that “New York cops have arrested, punched, whacked, shoved to the ground and tossed a barrier at reporters and photographers” covering protests. Reporters were asked by NYPD to raise their hands to prove they had credentials: when many dutifully did so, they were taken, upon threat of arrest, away from the story they were covering, and penned far from the site in which the news was unfolding. Other reporters wearing press passes were arrested and roughed up by cops, after being – falsely – informed by police that “It is illegal to take pictures on the sidewalk.”
In New York, a state supreme court justice and a New York City council member were beaten up; in Berkeley, California, one of our greatest national poets, Robert Hass, was beaten with batons. The picture darkened still further when Wonkette and Washingtonsblog.com reported that the Mayor of Oakland acknowledged that the Department of Homeland Security had participated in an 18-city mayor conference call advising mayors on “how to suppress” Occupy protests.
November 22, 2011
By Bob Ostertag
“Here is a very good article written by a professor at UC Davis, where the campus police acted like a gang of thugs by pepper spraying peaceful protesters. What has happened to the United States? The founding fathers have got to be so disappointed in us.” –KTRN
Yesterday, police at UC Davis attacked seated students with a chemical gas.
I teach at UC Davis and I personally know many of the students who were the victims of this brutal and unprovoked assault. They are top students. In fact, I can report that among the students I know, the higher a student’s grade point average, the more likely it is that they are centrally involved in the protests.
This is not surprising, since what is at issue is the dismantling of public education in California. Just six years ago, tuition at the University of California was $5357. Tuition is currently $12,192. According to current proposals, it will be $22,068 by 2015-2016. We have discussed this in my classes, and about one third of my students report that their families would likely have to pull them out of school at the new tuition. It is not a happy moment when the students look around the room and see who it is that will disappear from campus. These are young people who, like college students everywhere and at all times, form some of the deepest friendships they will have in their lives.
This is what motivates students who have never taken part in any sort of social protest to “occupy” the campus quad. And indeed, there were students who were attacked with chemical agents by robocops who were engaging in their first civic protest.
Since the video of the assault has gone viral, I will assume that most of you have seen the shocking footage. Let’s take a look at the equally outrageous explanations and justifications that have come from UC Davis authorities.
UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi sent a letter to the university last night. Chancellor Katehi tells us that:
October 27, 2009
By Sherry Baker
Despite all the panic and hype about the H1N1 pandemic and the rush to immunize people in droves against the virus, the fact is — so far — the outbreak has been fairly mild. Now University of California (UC) Davis, researchers studying H1N1, formerly referred to as “swine flu,” have identified a group of immunologically important sites called epitopes in the virus that are also present in seasonal flu viruses, which have been circulating for untold years. So what does this mean? If you were exposed to the earlier influenza viruses, you probably already have some level of immunity to H1N1.
The new study would explain why so many people over the age of 60 — whose bodies were likely exposed to similar flu viruses over the decades — have been found to carry antibodies or other kinds of immunity against H1N1. In fact, the CDC now admits pre-existing antibodies against the virus are found in about one third of H1N1 2009 patients over the age of 60, a fact that shows some natural immunity to the new H1N1 virus exists in many people.
These findings indicate that human populations may have some level of existing immunity to the pandemic H1N1 influenza and may explain why the 2009 H1N1-related symptoms have been generally mild,” researcher Carol Cardona, a veterinarian and Cooperative Extension specialist at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, said in a media statement.
Cardona and UC scientist Zheng Xing recently posted their findings online in the journal of Emerging Infectious Diseases. The study is also slated for publication in the November print edition of the journal, which is published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “Our hypothesis, based on the application of data collected by other researchers, suggests that cell-mediated immunity, as opposed to antibody-mediated immunity, may play a key role in lowering the disease-causing ability, or pathogenicity, of the 2009 H1N1 influenza,” Xing said in the media release.
Curiously, the new research suggests that although previous similar flu viruses seem to have produced antibodies in exposed people, these antibodies are not what are providing protection for those infected with the H1N1 2009 strain of influenza. Instead, Cardona and Xing theorize that instead of stimulating protective antibodies, the epitopes of the new H1N1 virus produce an immune response in a different way. The virus triggers production of cytotoxic T-cells that kill infected cells, attack the invading virus, and rev up the immune system.