Saturday, June 30, 2007
How DePaul is terrified of the "F-word"
By Evan Lorendo (Senior student at DePaul)
We came to DePaul’s graduation to hold banners saying, “Tenure for Finkelstein and Larudee” and we came to support the twenty five or so graduating seniors that were to hand the president, Fr. Denis Holtschneider, a letter of disapproval instead of shaking his hand. Our plan was to hold the signs up for as long as we could, but to do it silently so we would not be disruptive; and this was actually my biggest fear-not getting the message across with tact. My fears quickly went away as I noticed that the graduation was only fractionally as formal as I expected. There were signs, banners, and airhorns- it seemed more like a party than a graduation and the administration accepted this because the moment was about the students, not DePaul.
We were there as each name was read, A-Z, holding our signs and cheering after each graduate handed the president a letter. The process worked like clockwork- the announcer would read a card, the student would walk across stage, shake the president’s hand/ give him a letter, wave to the camera, and then the next person was up. One by one each graduating senior was allowed to express themselves any way they wanted to, be it having their middle name announced, wearing sunglasses, dancing in front of the camera, hugging the president, or slapping him on the behind. Everything was fair game because this was the student’s graduation. But halfway through the letter ‘S’, there was a long pause. As a bystander, there was an obvious problem and you could see it on the announcer’s face. The student had handed the announcer a card that read ‘Norman Finkelstein’ and she did not know if she should read it or not. Finally you could read her lips on the two jumbotrons- “I can’t read this”. So the student leaned over into the microphone and screamed the words- ‘Norman Finkelstein’. At that moment you could see the demeanor of every administrator on stage change. The student made her point.
Continue article here
Go DePaul students! I greatly respect all you have done to defend and support Prof. N. Finkelstein. Student activism at its best.