Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

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    Surviving in today’s political climate

    Students and faculty gather in BCC’s Atrium to discuss ways to support vulnerable groups under the Trump administration. (Tower/John Marshall)

    BCC hosts “Trump Student Teach-In”

    The First Amendment was read in the Berkeley City College Atrium on Tuesday, Oct. 10, kicking off the three-day “Trump Student Teach-In” event planned by BCC’s Sociology department.

    After a successful teach-in last year, Alice Wright from the Sociology department felt an obligation to carry the torch. Posters for the event stressed learning to survive in Trump’s America.

    “I want to create a sense of solidarity, so people don’t feel alone,” Wright said. After pitching the idea to have a teach-in similar to last year’s, many clubs were enthusiastic and wanted to get involved.

    “Someone tried pushing my friend in front of a BART train.”

    — Amel Al-Kaheli, BCC Muslim Student Association

    Wright said that the event was not a Trump bashing, but rather a chance for questions to be asked after each group presented, then 20 minutes for open mic remarks.

    The first speaker to address the crowd of roughly 50 students was Amel Al-Kaheli, representing the Muslim Student Association (MSA).

    “This club has many members affected by Trump,” Al-Kaheli spoke into the microphone. “Our problem is so much bigger than Trump — it’s fascism as a whole,” she continued.

    Wright’s goal of discourse first came to fruition when questions were opened to the floor after the MSA presentation.

    A student records a speaker at the “Trump Student Teach-in” in Berkeley City College’s atrium. (Tower/John Marshall)

    Jason, a California native who recently moved to the Bay Area, raised the eyebrows of most in the audience by asking questions regarding the percentage of Muslims who believe in Sharia Law and Quran quotes.

    Al-Kaheli invited Jason to talk after the event to help him better understand her religion. “We want to educate the uneducated,” she said.

    Al-Kaheli has felt the increased discrimination since Trump declared his candidacy for President.

    “There was someone who tried pushing my friend in front of a BART train,” she said.

    Dizz, a Black Student Union member who participated in last years teach-in, wants to build a community and wants to get a conversation going on what affects the other groups at BCC. “It is no shock to me,” said Dizz when asked about the President’s handling of Charlottesville. “It was already the reality for us,” he added.

    “We want to bring a lot of attention to a lot of people and bring resources to DACA recipients.”

    — Ricardo More, BCC Latino Leadership Club

    This is the first time the Latino Leadership Club has participated. The vice president of the club, Ricardo Mora, doesn’t see a lot of latinos raising their voices and felt that he should speak on their behalf on issues such as immigration and DACA. “We want to bring a lot of attention to a lot of people and bring resources to DACA recipients,” said Mora.

    Qadir McCray, 53, a BCC student, attended the teach-in and thought it was good to see the different clubs standing up for change. “I was interested to see where the young people’s heads were at.”


    John Marshall is a Tower Staff Writer. Email him at jtmarshallmc92(at)gmail.com.

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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