Student Protests: A Threat and an Appeal

Even if a person were trying to, he could hardly avoid receiving information on student protest activities. Not only do newspapers, radio, and TV fairly scream out with protest stories almost daily, but a considerable amount of people’s day-to-day conversation also includes some reference to the what, why, where, and when of the protest movements.

Opinions about these protests range widely. In attempting to describe “what” protests are, opinions range from a description of them as a “fad” which will soon pass away, to that of a movement which will eventually result in the complete change of higher education as we know it. The range of opinions about the “why” of student protests includes analyses of metabolic processes and theories of social evolution. Opinions about the “where” of protests involve focusing on the “multiversity” with its depersonalization and “identity-losses” to universities having “weak-kneed” and “lily-livered” administrators. Opinions of the “when” of the campus protests have included statements like, “They’ll end after the elections,” to, “We can count on something like this from now on.”

Published in BYU Studies Quarterly 09:4
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