How not to organize a successful sit-in

Did you catch the Hawaii News Now story Tuesday night which included an early announcement of a planned Thursday sit-in at UH President David Lassner’s office?

The UH Graduate Student Organization and the Associated Students of the University of Hawaii – the undergraduate student government group – announced students will occupy Bachman Hall Thursday morning in protest of the potential removal of Apple as chancellor. Lassner and the Board of Regents work in Bachman Hall.

The student group plans to gather at 7 a.m. in front of Hawaii Hall, where Apple’s office is located, and will march to Bachman Hall at 8 a.m.Thursday, a news release from the two student groups said.

I guess they haven’t had much experience with such things.

Perhaps the key element of surprise isn’t part of the current curriculum. If you announce days in advance that you’re going to occupy the office, don’t you suppose countermeasures will be taken to block the action?

What were these groups thinking when they issued a press release? Go figure.

15 responses to “How not to organize a successful sit-in

  1. And it’s summer session, too. Can’t imagine this is a ‘groundswell’ issue.

  2. Bear in mind, this ASUH we’re talking about. When you consider which of our local politicians once belonged to this organization, the absence of intelligence makes sense.

  3. Not sure this is constructive criticism. Apple job-in-question has just surfaced in the last few days. How do you expect to get involvement—with school sessions out—w/o some public announcement? I’m frankly, thankful for the news. At least someone is doing something instead of just telling us what little they know.

  4. You’re painting a wide brush, Scott. Who exactly are you talking about? Sylvia Luke, Scott Nishimoto, Kaniela Ing,,,

    Or my personal favorite, the Marshmellow Man.

    Go, Mark, Go!
    Go, Mark, Go!

  5. David Stannard

    I’d say, give them a break. Every generation starts from scratch on these things. And, since it is summer (something the UH administration no doubt was counting one), maybe the students think announcing things in advance will recruit more demonstrators, bring out the press, and cause the folks at Bachman to over-react. We’ll find out soon enough. And this may only be round one.

  6. I’m surprised they used old tech rather than new. Or maybe they’re practicing Subterfuge By Press Release? 😉

  7. memo:

    The 60s are over. UH is not going to nape the protesters. get over it. this is an election year and all. But get Over The Drama.

    UC Berkeley, UH is not. better stories are out there. find them.

    End of Memo. time for recess.

  8. Why not do a flash mob? Sadly indeed the passion of activism in the ’60s does appear to be just a memory…although I notice that tie-dye is coming back in vogue.

  9. Make an announcement to get press coverage.

  10. I suppose there’s no reason not to be forthcoming about our thinking. We decided to alert the press for a couple reasons. One, HNN had already posted a story stating we were planning protests. Two, as some already stated, it’s summer, everyone is spread out, and we needed as much publicity as possible to reach as many people as possible. Three, we were using social media to spread the word as well, so we figured the press might pick up the story anyway. There may have been other, perhaps better ways, of going about this, but our decision was not an unthoughtful one.

  11. Also, here is a the public site if anyone wants to take a look, or perhaps join us!

  12. Don’t really think that surprising/ambushing Lassner with a sit-in vs. making an advance announcement of the same will make an iota of difference as far as Apple’s status is concerned. For this particular case, a protest that draws the largest crowd possible would make a greater impact as far as public opinion is concerned. Nick makes a valid point.

    But with that said, don’t hold your breath thinking that this will make Lassner reverse this decision. Newly minted presidents have a lot of political capital to expend without breaking a sweat over their own status.

  13. Actually, it was then ASUH president Mark Takai (yes, marshmellow mascot creator) who organized a very successful student march on Bachman Hall to protest the Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1989.

    He got a groundswell of support to have the UH administration denounce Chinese actions and spying on Chinese students at UH, and for the UH Foundation to stop pimping itself to rich Chinese donors.

  14. A flash mob. LOL.

  15. Who are we to tell the current UH students how to hold a “successful sit-in?” The oh-so-secret Bachman sit-in was 50 years ago. Flash mobs are oh so 10 years ago.

    Nick Chagnon, thank you for taking a stand.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.