The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

Print Edition
Letter to the editor submissions
Have a strong opinion about something happening on campus or in Fort Collins? Want to respond to an article written on The Collegian? Write a Letter to the Editor by following the guidelines here.
Follow Us on Twitter
How Can Colorado Quarterback Shedeur Sanders Improve For the 2025 NFL Draft?
How Can Colorado Quarterback Shedeur Sanders Improve For the 2025 NFL Draft?
June 6, 2024

Colorado quarterback Shedeur Sanders stands out as a prime prospect for the 2025 NFL Draft, and it’s no surprise he's the current favorite...

Campus protest demands administration speak out on Palestine

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
  • A protester holds a sign reading “Silence is Complacence” at a protest led by Students for Justice in Palestine April 29.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • A protester holds signs reading “Divest from Israhell” and “Free Palestine” at a protest and march from The Plaza to the Colorado State University Administration Building April 29. The protesters delivered a letter to President Amy Parsons demanding financial divestment and transparency; an academic boycott of weapons manufacturers and academic institutions operating in occupied Palestinian territories; and an issuance of a public statement on the conflict.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • A protester holds a sign reading “Humanity Dies with Palestine” April 29. Students for Justice in Palestine released a statement that read “(Colorado State University) must take a stance and protect its learning environment — thereby its students —from disreputable entities and function as a good steward of higher education values by acting on behalf of its students.” SJP led a protest and march to the Administration Building to deliver a letter to CSU President Amy Parsons.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • A protester holds a wooden coffin decorated with the Palestinian flag and “Ceasefire Now,” “34,000” and “Diplomacy Now” written on it April 29. Students for Justice in Palestine led a protest and march to the Administration Building to deliver a demand letter to Colorado State University President Amy Parsons.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Protesters hold signs reading “Anti-Netanyahu & his far-right extremist party ≠ Anti-Semitism” and “Indigenous Peoples for Gaza” April 29. Students for Justice in Palestine released a statement that read “(Colorado State University) must take a stance and protect its learning environment — thereby its students — from disreputable entities and function as a good steward of higher education values by acting on behalf of its students.” SJP led a protest and march to the Administration Building to deliver a letter to CSU President Amy Parsons.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Protesters march to the Colorado State University Administration Building to deliver a demand letter written by Students for Justice in Palestine April 29. The letter demands financial divestment and transparency; an academic boycott of weapons manufacturers and academic institutions operating in occupied Palestinian territories; and an issuance of a public statement on the conflict.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • A protester holds a sign reading “No More Bombs on our Dime” at a protest led by Students for Justice in Palestine April 29.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Protesters march to the Colorado State University Administration Building to deliver a demand letter written by Students for Justice in Palestine April 29. The letter demands financial divestment and transparency; an academic boycott of weapons manufacturers and academic institutions operating in occupied Palestinian territories; and an issuance of a public statement on the conflict.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Protesters march to the Colorado State University Administration Building to deliver a demand letter written by Students for Justice in Palestine April 29. The letter demands financial divestment and transparency; an academic boycott of weapons manufacturers and academic institutions operating in occupied Palestinian territories; and an issuance of a public statement on the conflict.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Ella Smith, a member of Students for Justice in Palestine, chants, “Free, free Palestine” April 29.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
  • Protesters gather in front of the Colorado State University Administration Building chanting while three members of Students for Justice in Palestine deliver a demand letter to CSU President Amy Parsons April 29.

    Collegian | Julia Percy
Navigate Left
Navigate Right

A crowd of students, faculty and community members showed up 1 p.m. April 29 in The Plaza for a protest calling for a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war along with other demands detailed in a letter hand delivered to Amy Parson’s office and sent electronically April 28.

The Colorado State University chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine organized the demonstration and collectively wrote the letter of demands. The letter was posted on social media prior to the protest, detailing the SJP’s demands: “financial divestment,” “academic boycott,” “end the silence” and “support of students’ First Amendment rights.”

Ad

The letter also included a deadline for a response: 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 1, and stated, “Failure to respond to or acknowledge this letter will be understood as a dismissal of all these demands.” 

CSU student and SJP member Ella Smith led the protesters as they marched on campus and was also identified as the media liaison for the event. Smith spoke at the initial Plaza gathering and discussed how they are Jewish and how the phrase, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,” is not antisemitic. 

In addition to Smith, a veterinary medicine doctoral student who was identified only as Shaffer spoke.

“I’m honored to be speaking as a student, as a Jew, as part of NoCo Anti-Zionist Jews and as a member of Jewish Voice for Peace,” Shaffer said. “As Jews, we know what genocide looks like and thus are responsible for speaking up and saying, ‘Never again,’ when we see it. Now is one of those moments.”

They highlighted the developing health crisis in the Gaza Strip and focused on the lack of access to health care currently faced by Palestinian individuals.

“As I provide top-notch care to the pets and animals of Fort Collins, there are children and men and women who are dying … because Israel has bombed or attacked the vast majority of hospitals and clinics in Gaza,” Shaffer said. “Our dogs get better health care than Palestinian people do.”

An unknown speaker called on the university to follow its student government in supporting the issue, discussing the recent Humanity and Community Act, a piece of legislation passed by the Associated Students of CSU senate in a majority vote.

After the speeches, the group began marching down University Avenue to the Administration Building. 

Throughout the walk, chants were prompted by those leading, such as, “Israel, Israel what do you say? How many kids have you killed today?” and, “There is only one solution, intifada revolution.” More joined the crowd as it made its way to The Oval.

Ad

Upon arriving at the Administration Building, leaders read the demands aloud once more and sent three representatives to deliver the letter to the administration while chants continued outside. 

There were CSU Police Department officers present, but none approached the group. After delivering the letter, the group’s walk back to The Plaza began. 

Once back in front of the Lory Student Center, other speakers were invited up, and closing remarks were made. After the closing remarks, Smith spoke further about their own stance on the issue and their motivation for aiding in organizing the protest. 

“It is absolutely atrocious that CSU is being actively complacent in a genocide, refusing to speak on it, refusing to comment on the fact that there is not only a genocide, but a scholasticide, which is the destruction of all universities, all schools in Gaza,” Smith said. “Not only is that a war crime, but that’s also just an awful, awful thing, and the university not commenting on that makes them complicit. … We all believe that there needs to be a free Palestine.”

A statement from SJP focused specifically on the educational situation in Gaza and CSU’s role as a public university.

“Colorado State University’s Principles of Community vows it to ‘uphold the laws, policies and procedures that promote justice in all respects,'” the statement read. “This cannot happen while partnering with entities that enable a large-scale assault on higher education in Gaza.”

The protest on CSU’s campus comes after several encampments have been set up on college campuses across the country. Organizers specifically referenced the encampments and related arrests of students at Columbia University and the colleges associated with the Auraria Campus in Denver.

Following the protest, a statement was released on the official CSU Instagram and President Parsons’ Instagram that referenced the protests that have taken place on campus throughout the academic year.

Though the statement did not make any specific references to SPJ or this most recent protest, it did state that Parsons has “met with and (is) meeting this week with various student groups to hear their concerns and to encourage respectful dialogue on a wide range of complex and challenging issues.”

SJP promised more peaceful protests if administration does not meet their demands, and as of publishing, there has been no official statement from the administration about the letter of demands delivered during the march.

Reach Aubree Miller at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @CSUCollegian.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

When commenting on The Collegian’s website, please be respectful of others and their viewpoints. The Collegian reviews all comments and reserves the right to reject comments from the website. Comments including any of the following will not be accepted. 1. No language attacking a protected group, including slurs or other profane language directed at a person’s race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, social class, age, physical or mental disability, ethnicity or nationality. 2. No factually inaccurate information, including misleading statements or incorrect data. 3. No abusive language or harassment of Collegian writers, editors or other commenters. 4. No threatening language that includes but is not limited to language inciting violence against an individual or group of people. 5. No links.
All The Rocky Mountain Collegian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *