Very good student turnout, but Where is PSAFE?!?!? why aren’t they here to answer questions and explain things to us?
Mike Pernick president-elect gives an introductory speech.
Izaak Orlansky moderates.
Saul Carlin reads concerns from people who are off-campus, including concerned parents.
Question directed at PSafe: what’s the policy for crowd control?
no answer from Psafe or administration. (PSafe not here, neither is Middletown Police)
Student recalls asking a police officer what they’re doing and if we’re supposed to be intimidated by their presence. The reply was “yeah, I guess so.”
Parties: not to let this hinder future parties and senior week.
List of Issues at the meeting (no answers, though):
media bias— portrayed as necessary violence by the police.
Communication: No communication between students and police. Student was threatened by tasers while he was trying to communicate and ask why they were there.
Why were the police called? Not sure why THIS night was different from every other nights– past parties have been larger with larger crowds. Paranoid Conspiracy Theory: this night was at the end of the semester when it would be harder for us to organize a response
Magnitude of the force: Student was attacked by a dog on the living room floor of a friend’s house. Knocked to the ground, begging police to get dog off, the police hit his head, started bleeding, still didn’t call the dog off.
Disrespect: Went to the police station, ask for copies of the police reports. Wouldn’t give it to them until they got a camera and began recording. People at the police station were laughing and making light of the situation. Also, history of PSafe and Police using students as target practice.
Videotapping: what’s with the videos? what are they for? No one knows.
Police brutality doesn’t just affect Wesleyan students: general concern for everyone living in Middletown. Not an isolated incident.
Alex Gelman delivers a beautiful speech about love, dehumanization, and how proud he is of the Wesleyan community.
16 police cars: took an ambulance half and hour to get here after being called– it was impossible for paramedics to get to the wounded because of the 16 police cars blocking the street.
Next Steps: archived collected documentation, someone should talk to the freshmen next year at orientation, committees should be set up, Engaging alumni and trustees who will be here next week, etc
Getting the cops riled up: whoever threw that beer can at the police car screwed it up for the rest of us
Officer Clark: “how many people do you have to abuse before you get thrown out?”… and officers in general being very excited to shoot some students.
Party was Not a Riot: the riot procedure was misapplied and police officers were not responsive and threatening, students felt paralyzed and voiceless, violated.
Conflicting policy: people apparently couldn’t be in the street, or the backyard, or the houses.
Increased police presence on campus over the last few years, and tension and animosity between police and Wesleyan students (privilege and resentment?). Dean Mike agrees that there is increased police presence on campus, due to us hiring them to help us for burglaries and assaults. (of course the ultimate irony is that they’re now assaulting us.)
Not only was the police force excessive, it was ineffective: they didn’t actually break up the party. We watched them leave.
Know your rights: they will try to intimidate you out of them.
Past action against similar incidents and meetings with PSafe and the MPD: those meetings were very silencing, and very small. If this group of people had been there, things might’ve been different already.
Wesleyan Parent says: really concerned and emotional. This whole group was radicalized against the police– that should not have happened, that is not their job. Wants the university to have an ongoing relationship with the MPD, to make clear that it does not want a repetition of this event under any circumstances.
Call to show PSafe’s video publicly, or on the film series.
Dean Mike is sorry he wasn’t able to give answers, but hopefully will answer them soon. Repeat: more firsthand accounts! Send your pictures to Argus for the special issue tomorrow (and Wesleying!)
Mike Pernick wants everyone to send everything to WSA (However, it’s been my experience in the past that the WSA is really bad at archiving– this better change. Pernick, this is a warning: we won’t just “trust you” like you tell us to. Don’t screw up)