STUDENTS AND YOUTH
WCW National Day of Resistance – Military Recruiters Off Our Campuses
and Out of Our Communities
Report from Los Angeles
"May 16th - Shut Down The Recruiters!"
Friday, May 16th
- 3rd period bell sounds at an East Los Angeles high school, and 75 students
& several teachers are out in the main quad chalking silhouettes of their
bodies all around the school pathways. (The day before they had listened
to presentations by a WCW organizer which included testimony from Winter
Soldier, the Declare It Now video and the waterboarding AP clip.) This is
the period before lunch-time in this school that numbers 5,000 students, and is
a heavily-targeted recruitment ground for the Armed forces and the Marines.
Some of the drawings are quite powerful and include outlines of children,
bodies with amputated limbs, tanks and wording on number of casualties, number
of suicides among U.S. servicemen, and cost
tape goes up around tree trunks, and students start sporting orange flagging
tape as hair bands, wrist bands, on their backpacks, etc. Four volunteers put
on the orange jumpsuits and taking seriously their detainee role, remain
silent, heads cast down, arms tied as they start a procession, surrounded by
other students with large poster of No Torture and enlarged photos of Iraqi war
casualties. The students begin to march, amidst the clamor of lunch time and a
school sponsored election campaign for senior class president. But the march
was cut short because school administrators stopped the march and brought
students into the office for participating in an "unauthorized
activity." The jumpsuits, posters, black hoods were confiscated and the
teachers were told they would be returned after a conference with the school's
vice-principal to be held on Monday. One of the teachers asked what the
response would have been from the administration if he had requested permission
to have this lunchtime procession. The administrator told him, they probably
would not have authorized it. The two WCW organizers who were invited
there by the teachers were escorted out of the school due to a regulation that
"does not permit outside visitors from mingling with students at lunchtime
without previous clearance".
The sponsoring teachers were not on hand while this was happening –
coincidentally one of them had been called outside of the school to investigate
a student walk-out which turned out to be false.
Not to be discouraged, we met up with three teachers and about
eight students in the 90+ degree heat and carpooled down to the Recruitment
Center. We were later joined by a social worker, and an impeachment
activist. One teacher marched into the Marine recruitment station demanding to
know why the marines go after her students, challenging the marine
recruiter to stand up to her, not prey on students with their lies; sending
youth off to kill and die.
Teachers repeatedly asked recruiters to come to the school and debate, but the
recruiters adamantly refused. One recruiter said that they fight to
protect our right to protest! Two high school students walked into army
recruiting station and one of the students recognized her classmate. All of us
went in to Army recruiting with our signed eviction notices talking over the
recruiters heads, directly to the two students shouting, "Don't
sign, you're being sent to kill." Six recruiters came over telling
us we had to leave and we demanded to know why – why can they come onto the
school and yet we have no right to be there. All six came over and escorted us
out. Then we noticed another student at the Marine Center next door talking to
a recruiter watching a video. The marines had locked the door, so we pounded on
it, using the bull horn, demanding that he stop lying to the student. One by
one, the social worker, the teacher and then the students used the bull horn
shouting thru the glass to the student that he had options,
don't get sent off to kill and be killed, maimed, commit suicide. We chanted
loudly "Don't listen to his, we want you home alive". We knew we were
getting through b/c the student turned when one of the young women, took the
bull horn and said "you're too cute to go to war and kill".
Both the Federal Office of Homeland Security and the local police came, and
told us we "could protest", but not disrupt the military recruiter's
'place of business.' We couldn't shout into the center or obstruct pedestrian
traffic. We started a picket line, led by the students, shouting "What are
they recruiting for? Murder, Rape, Torture, War. - Shut it Down, Shut it
All during this time, many drivers honked their support. One of
the chants that drew an enthusiastic response was – "Bush, cochino,
marrano y asesino!" (Bush – pig, hog, and assasin). As the protest
drew to a close, one of the teachers summed it up with her students: "We
hit their weak spot – the recruiters called the cops b/c we were getting to
them. This is the real deal – your fellow students were in there getting fed
lies, all for a $2000 commission for these recruiters. This is what it means to
stand up for something you believe in". The teacher later joked that the
students could call her to bail them out if they land up in jail, but she may
be in the cell next to them. This was the same teacher that told her students,
that one of the reasons why their high school walked out during the East Los
Angeles blowouts of the 1960s was due to the disproportionate amount of Chicano
youth dying in Vietnam. The Walkouts were not only about racism and inequality
in the schools - it was about the Vietnam war.
Spirits were high, and both teachers and students, thought this was a
great success for the awareness that it had sparked. There was a commitment
among the participants to continue this battle, including with next month's 3rd Friday Iraq
Report from Los Angeles On April 18th
At 3:30pm on April 18th, there was spirited repudiation of the Bush Regime
the East Los Angeles Military Recruiting Center. Students from
nearby Roosevelt High School came out to make their voices heard, after they
had seen some World Can’t Wait presentations in their school about the
truth of the war, and what the armed forces are recruiting for. Video
testimony of Iraq war vets at the Winter Soldier Investigation, as well as
the Declare It Now video were viewed. Bandanas were taken up with
enthusiasm, as well as several rolls of orange flagging tape, which has
become a popular political statement worn on backpacks and wrists
throughout the school.
This was the students' first WCW demonstration. They joined with other World Can’t Wait supporters in the powerful chant
“What are they recruiting for? Murder! Rape! Torture! War!“ Soon students
took the bullhorn and were chanting anti-Bush Regime chants in Spanish and
Military recruiters who had been inside the open center on our
arrival, shut the lights and left by the back door soon after. We declared
victory and the front doors and windows were decorated with posters,
orange flagging tape, No Torture banners and individually signed eviction
notices in Spanish and English, to the approving honks of traffic passing
A small contingent of students and others took off down the
sidewalk holding banners and chanting:
“Students United will never be
"What are they recruiting for? Murder! Rape! Torture!
"There’s a killer in the White House! Time to drive his ass
"Si, Se Puede!"
"We won’t be your murderers! We won’t be your
We have our convictions! This is an eviction!"
"Stay out of
our schools! Cause this is what you get! An army of none! An army of
And one other memorable Spanish language chant that this writer was
informed refers to Bush as an assassin and a pig.
One woman who came, a social worker, had heard about this action on Jim Lafferty’s radio show on
KPFK. She said she usually spent her Fridays across town at an anti-war
vigil, but thought this was an important action. She got on the phone to
call the vigil people to join us, and said she was thinking that this might
be a more important place to have their weekly vigils from now on.
We ended the action reading an excerpt of Ron Kovic’s statement of support for
the Berkeley actions, and his call for these kinds of actions nationwide. We
also invited students to the national meeting in SF and will be connecting
with them in the coming weeks to strengthen and deepen their political
activism. One young man who had been talking with us at school about how he
thought that protest did not work, told us that this experience has changed
Wednesday, MARCH 19th – 5 Years of
Illegitimate War on Iraq ! End the War! Shut Down Recruitment Centers! Drive
the War Criminals from Office!
in Los Angeles began early at a local high school, where a couple of us reached
out to students as they came off the bus and into school. We asked them what
they thought about the war; not surprisingly the vast majority of them said
they hated it or ‘it sucks’. Many of them didn’t think they could do anything
about it; and when we asked them how many Iraqis they thought had died during
the five years of the war, all but one said a million – most answers were in
the low thousands. We handed out eviction notices, which they liked and took up
and we asked them to take a stand and join with us that afternoon to shut down
We returned that afternoon before the last bell, armed with Robert
Fiske’s enlarged photograph of the child whose leg had been blown off and an
enlarged Eviction Notice. We planted ourselves directly in front of the
students’ path to buses and the busy crosswalk. That did the trick; the photos
were stark, very shocking to many, some didn’t want to see it and turned their
heads away. Others just stood and stared, taking it all in. Students took up
March 19th flyers and eviction notices and promised to get them out.
All day we were also handing out postcards announcing the Winter Soldier
testimonies and asking them to check the website; hear it from U.S. soldiers
themselves who hate what they’ve done and want this war to stop. A handful of students were in ROTC uniforms,
but they still took flyers and Winter Soldier postcards. Some student
administrators came over, read our flyers, saw our signs and told us we had to
leave the premises, but we countered with the fact that we were on a public
sidewalk, not school property. They responded “we’ll see about that” but never
Report February 15th in Los Angeles - Day of National Resistance Against Military's Aggressive
Targeting of Youth to Fight this Illegal and Immoral War.
A group of over 30 people gathered in front of the Hollywood
Armed Forces Recruiting Station, prompting the early closure that day of this
entry to the killing machine. It was quickly redecorated with a “Stop Torture” banner that accurately captured what
people are being recruited for, and WCW posters.
Ages ranged from 4 month-old Jake in his “Stop Wars” t-shirt to grandmother Mary who was all decked-out in orange.
Two people who have been regularly attending actions in their orange jumpsuits and chains again sharpened the debate with the graphic image that they create.
A torture survivor/activist from El Salvador held a placard that read “Stop Torture” with the stenciled images of 2 Guantanamo detainees
in the graffiti style of Banksy.
January 31st - Report from Los Angeles
TAKING IT TO THE HIGH SCHOOLS –
The Call to Action on January 31st began in the morning in the Los
Angeles area with a presentation to an U.S. Government class of about 40
students at a Los Angeles area high school. The class had been studying the election, the constitution, the role of the executive branch and executive
orders. To fit in with their course work, we were talking about National Security Letters, which are a type of executive order Bush has used to declare
people "enemy combatants." At first, the teacher was concerned that we stick to the class lesson plan in our presentation, and the information
came across as too academic and half the class was tuning out, but then we broke through to bring to life for students how exactly people do end up in a
place like Guantanamo, wearing the orange jumpsuits and having no rights.
Los Angeles - Orange Alert - November 16th
LA had a small, but very spirited event on Hollywood Blvd... converging at the Armed
Forces Career Center at 3pm. Reports from students and teachers were that
many students from a nearby high school were wearing orange at school that
day. A few WCW'ers had been there Thursday and Friday, getting out
stacks of flyers and rolls of orange flagging tape, which the youth took
up and spread inside the school. One student, who's been wearing his
green WCW button on his backpack every day since he got it, played a key role
in creating a buzz inside. When school let out, some
students marched and chanted from their school and all along the blvd.
They were joined by two of their teachers, one of whom had announced the
Orange Alert and encouraged her students to wear orange. Some students
from Dennis Loo's classes joined us, as did a WCW student organizer from a
ROCK THE BELLS/LA REPORT: AUGUST 11,2007
Hyundai Pavilion, San Bernardino California
The Hyundai Pavilion in San Bernardino California is a huge festival ground, and
can host concerts with an audience of up to 65,000 people. The concert was sold out. Concert goers
primarily ranged in age from 18 to 30, though there were others attending on
both ends of that spectrum.
Report from WCW at Coachella Music Festival
Dear WCW community and others who may stumble across my words,
I would have written sooner, but it has taken me this long
to decompress from the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. This event, though it is more than that, it’s truly been an experience, has
open my mind to what is possible as well as reinforced just how much work is
[comment, rate, and spread this video]
E-mail from Los Angeles World Can't
Friends and fellow organizers
is a PDF of the LA Times article (December
30, 2006) in the California section. Also, attached
is a copy of the student petition created to build
support for the students that walked out of school
on Nov 2nd.
The article does a great job of describing
and supporting the student's right to protest. However,
The writer doesn't seem to have a good sense of the
purpose of or even what transpired on Nov 2.
Distribute all over campus!
PDF's of brand new postable newsletter
aimed at students. In the little time before the end
of the semester, this needs to be distributed to students
everywhere. Post it all over campus, distribute in
your dorm, classes, student groups, and out on campus.
Ask professors to pass it out with their final exam.
Distributing this far and wide will mean that thousands
of students know about the movement to drive out the
Bush regime and our plans for the State of the Union
address, and will go home for winter break organizing.
here] outside of postable newsletter
here] inside of postable newsletter
These downloads are black & white, 22" x 17" (newspaper
size), and should be printed on one sheet, front and
back. We recommend printing it on newspaper. Just
find a printer in your area immediately, and tell
them what you're doing. There are many printers who
hate the Bush regime, just call around and explain
what you're doing, and you should be able to find
someone who can print it quick and at a discount.
Update on Students Walkouts
Read the report
with photos of the Nov 2 walk out of Los Angeles High
School by a Youth/Student Organizer for WCW (Latest).
PROTEST RETALIATION AGAINST HIGH SCHOOL
STUDENTS IN THE L.A. AREA FOR NOVEMBER 2ND
URGENT UPDATE: Belmont High School student
Geovany Serrano has just been notified by Belmont
High School authorities that he will not be allowed
to return to Belmont High and will be transferred
to another school. Geovany remains under house arrest
and is facing criminal charges for passing out flyers
calling for the November 2nd walkout. Call Superintendent
Romer's office to protest this outrageous act of retaliation.
Further protests are being planned. Call School Principal
Gary Yoshinobu at: EMAIL - email@example.com
PHONE - (213) 250-0244, FAX - (213) 250-9706.
Further update: As a result of
hundreds of outraged calls on Friday, November 4,
Reseda High School authorities backed off and informed
ninth grader, Sara Escudero, that there would be no
punishment at all!
Mumia Abu Jamal on L.A World Can't Wait High School
from Mumia Abu Jamal on L.A World Can't Wait High
School organizer Geovany Serrano. (11/25/05)
from 11/16/05 press conference in front of LAUSD
on the attacks on the Nov 2 students organizers.
account of a Granada Hill Student organizer
the Petition in opposition to RETALIATION
AGAINST HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS IN THE L.A. AREA FOR
NOVEMBER 2ND WALK OUTS
it in PDF format here
Please also send a copy
of your completed petitions to:
World Can’t Wait- Los Angeles • 5507 Santa Monica Blvd, #207
CA 90028 • 323.462.4771
letters in support of Students who walked out
on Nov 2
an account of the Battle at Belmont High by a
Youth/Student Organizer for WCW.
(Read attached Fact Sheet for reports of retaliation
in high schools and what you can do.)
FACT SHEET: Harassment and Retaliation
Against High School Students
In city after city, high school students walked out
in response to a call for No Work! No School! from
The World Can't Wait - Drive Out the Bush Regime.
Their presence energized protests nationwide, and
played a crucial role in launching a movement that
will not stop until Bush steps down and takes his
whole program with him. In the L.A. area, there were
walkouts at dozens of schools in the biggest movement
of high school students since the walkouts against
the anti-immigrant Proposition 187 in 1994.
But as the Call for this movement stated, "If we speak
the truth, they will try to silence us. If we act,
they will try to stop us." The exact number of students
facing suspension, fines, expulsion, transfer or other
measures is unknown. But The World Can't Wait has
received reports indicating retaliation against many
students at schools throughout the area.
The policy of the Los Angeles Unified School District
(LAUSD) regarding student walkouts was communicated
in a memo to "all principals" dated October 26, 2005,
and initialed by Dan Isaacs from the Office of the
Chief Operating Officer. It stated, "Do not attempt
to prevent students from leaving the campus." (A copy
of this memo is available on request.)
In the weeks before November 2 there was a pattern
of harassment and attempted intimidation at numerous
schools. Students were told by administrators and
security guards that they could receive truancy tickets
and be subjected to hundreds of dollars of fines.
They were forbidden to carry literature and other
materials onto campus, such as stickers saying, "Resist
or Die," or flyers carrying the Call from The World
Can't Wait - Drive Out the Bush Regime. "Resist or
Die" T-shirts were banned from campuses.
Young women at Locke H.S. in South Central
LA were sent to the principal's office for having
posters that called William Bennett a Nazi for saying
that aborting all Black babies would be a good way
to reduce crime. The principal confiscated all their
posters and threatened them with being kicked out
At Fairfax H.S. students reported that an announcement
was made over the P.A. system saying that students
would be suspended for walking out. Some teachers
threatened to give students failing grades for the
day. At Fairfax and other schools, students were told
they'd miss the California Exit Exam and wouldn't
be able to graduate.
November 1, there were more serious attacks on student
organizers. At Reseda H.S., a ninth grader,
Sara Escudero, was called into the principal's office.
She was threatened with punitive transfer and with
arrest for vandalism for having stickers. Then she
was suspended for two days and told by the principal
that he would begin expulsion procedures against her.
(As a result of hundreds of outraged calls on Friday,
November 4, Reseda High School authorities backed
off and informed Sara that there would be no punishment
At Belmont H.S., a 16-year-old student, Geovany
Serrano, was grabbed by school police, pepper-sprayed
and arrested. This student is under house arrest with
an ankle bracelet and phone surveillance, and faces
criminal charges in addition to suspension.
On and after November 2, numerous principals, in direct
contradiction to official policy, ordered the schools
locked down: gates chained and padlocked, police stationed
at exits, teachers required to close their doors and
keep students in their classrooms.
At Van Nuys H.S., the principal issued a memo
before November 2 saying the school would be locked
down. When students tried to walk out, they were assaulted
by deans, including one young woman who was pulled
by the hair by one dean. Two women escaped by climbing
a fence and later spoke at the rally in Westwood.
Students reported that twenty students were given
one-day suspensions, and at least two are being kicked
out, transferred to another school. Other students
were ticketed by police. One student's mother reported
that his ticket was for "truancy and protesting against
George Bush." Parent conferences to readmit suspended
students to school were canceled by administrators.
Reseda H.S. was also locked down on November
2, with a police car parked in front of the main entrance.
Students who tried to walk were taken to the office
and given tickets. A Reseda High student reported
that two students were arrested, and five were given
At Lynwood H.S. 40 - 50 students gathered on
campus, prepared to walk out. Police were blocking
some gates, and other gates were chained and locked.
They staged a sit-in by the administration office.
After a time, when only four students continued the
sit-in, all were taken into the office, along with
another student who was passing by, and charged with
truancy for trying to walk out. They also face suspension.
One of the people in the office made a racist comment
to the young students: "You Mexicans have to stop
climbing over the fence."
Since November 2, the administration at Lynwood has
threatened retaliation-including transfers and suspensions-against
those they claim are organizers. The administration
has also told students that it will find and punish
the leader. And a teacher who is against the Iraq
War has also been threatened.
Lincoln H.S. in East LA was locked down as
150 students tried to walk out. At the Orthopedic
Medical Magnet H.S., up to 70 students are being
threatened with suspensions for walking out or not
coming to school to attend protest events. At Locke
High School students report that a large number
of students may face suspension for attempting to
organize a walkout. At other schools, students were
given detention for walking.
The World Can't Wait is investigating all reports
that students turn in to us, and there is every indication
that what we know now is only a hint of what has happened.
These high school students need the support and assistance
of everyone who reads this fact sheet. They need lawyers
to help mount a legal defense against LAUSD retaliation.
They need financial support. And they need political
support. Everyone reading this should write a letter
of outrage to the LAUSD and call Superintendent Roy
Romer's office demanding that there be no retribution
of any sort against the students who organized for
and participated in the November 2nd World Can't Wait
- Drive Out the Bush Regime walkouts. Romer's
numbers are: PHONE - (213) 241-7000, FAX - (213) 241-8442.
Romer can also be emailed at
And contact the World Can't Wait office in L.A. at
(323) 462-4771 / email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We need legal support from attorneys. If
you want to volunteer, please call our office or email
us. Please call the ACLU to request that they take
up these cases. Send donations to World Can’t Wait
at our address below, earmarked for high school legal
World Can't Wait: www.worldcantwait.org, email@example.com,
323-462-4771; 5507 Santa Monica Blvd., #207, Los Angeles,
CA 90028. Press contact: Henry Carson, 323-336-3050.
To Download this important factsheet
here, PDF Format (3 pages)
here to download the high school flyer
(print back to back and cut down the center of the
here to download Today's reason to Drive Out the Bush
here to download Resist or Die flyer
(print back to back and cut down the center of the
about torture comes to UCLA, October 20, 2005
World Can't Wait! LA Organizers Ambush David Horowitz
Film Festival , October 21, 2005
by L.A. High Student at Press Conference in from Fairfax
High , October 28, 2005
in Support of High School Students Participating
in Nov. 2 Actions by World Can't Wait! Drive Out the
Bush Regime! LA, October 28, 2005
Message to Educators - from Andy Griggs
member of UTLA board of directors* (*for
identification purposes only)