Howard U. Students Invade Pol’s Office, Back Katrina Victims
WASHINGTON, D.C. –– Twenty students from Howard University marched from campus to the office of Senator David Vitter (R-Louisiana) who has been complicit in the gentrification process of New Orleans by blocking a moderate bill that would have supposedly guaranteed one-for-one replacement of demolished affordable housing. Vitter was “unavailable,” so the students sat-in, demanding action. A dozen cops were called to intimidate the students, to no avail. The students presented a petition signed by 400 students to Vitter’s aide demanding that Vitter stop blocking the bill, and the students vowed to return to his office in solidarity with public housing residents in New Orleans, while several students will also return this summer to continue the struggle in New Orleans itself. Several of these bold students joined the May Day march in New York City and brought their message of struggle against fascism to the May Day dinner.
These actions were a result of Howard University Political Education and Action Committee spending spring break in New Orleans working with “C3/Hands Off Iberville,” a coalition of New Orleans activists and public housing residents fighting against the demolition of their public housing homes. Major real estate developers, with support from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the New Orleans City Council, are using the lie that Hurricane Katrina made public housing uninhabitable to demolish affordable housing and replace it with high-end condos. They already did this—before the storm!—by demolishing St. Thomas public housing and creating River Garden, with only 200 affordable of the 700 that had been promised to the community.
New Orleans gives us an early look at fascism USA. Bulldozers and police brutalize people and their homes, while the ruling class tests out strategies of social control while letting their buddies make huge profits from the “recovery.” All the more reason to fight for revolution!