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ASU students rally in support of Mizzou protests

Marchers call for more respect for minority groups

ASU group rallies in support of Mizzou
November 16, 2015

A group of Arizona State University students rallied on the Tempe campus Monday in support of recent protests at the University of Missouri.

About 50 people marched and chanted “ASU supports Mizzou” and “Black Lives Matter” for about an hour on the Hayden Lawn and along the Palm Walk on Monday afternoon. The event was organized by the ASU branch of the NAACP.

At the University of Missouri in Columbia, nicknamed “Mizzou,” student protests over racial discrimination intensified over several days earlier this month, leading to the president of the university system to resign on Nov. 9. During the unrest at Mizzou, many black students and faculty members said that racial issues pervade the community.

Other universities, including Yale, in Connecticut, and Claremont McKenna, in California, have seen protests over racial tensions in recent weeks, with calls for more diversity among students and faculty.

At Monday’s rally in Tempe, the marchers called for members of all minority groups to demand respectful treatment.

“It’s not just black people,” said Chris Chavers, a former ASU student who helped to organize the rally. “It's Latinos and Asian-Americans and students in the LGBT communityHe was referring to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.. Do you have the audacity to ask for mutual respect?”

Several marchers shared personal stories about the experience of being minorities at ASU.

The group set up two large whiteboards on Hayden Lawn and invited people to write messages under the heading “Being black at ASU.” Several marchers wrote statements including “We’re not just athletes,” “Black and beautiful” and “We will not be silent.” 

“Our emphasis on expanding access to a quality education, not only has increased the diversity of our student body, but helped us build a robust student support system,” said Kevin Cook, Dean of Students on the Tempe Campus. “We welcome the many different viewpoints that our students bring to their campus experience, and we always take students’ concerns seriously.”

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