By Caitlyn McCoy
The University of Florida’s new president, Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse, officially started his new role this week. Protestors gathered outside of Tigert Hall on his first day to protest his arrival, claiming that he is “not an appropriate representative” of the student body.
A 150-200 student protest was hosted by UF’s Young Democratic Socialists of America and included members of the UF Graduate Assistant Labor Union and Student Government’s “Change Party” members.
Protecting woke DEI measures, “equity pay”, and commitments to leftist environmental initiatives and “transgender” surgical mutilation are among the students’ demands.
This is not the first time this has happened. In October, the same organizations were outside Emerson Alumni Hall and actually disrupted all of the open question and answer sessions with now President Ben Sasse.
Faith Corbett, a Change Party Campaign Manager and Student Government Minority Leader, said that “a lot of what Change Party has been built off of is social justice, equity, and representation, and a lot of those are being threatened right now. Student Government is taking an active stance.”
Corbett stated she and many other students are anxious about the policies that Sasse will be bringing forward.
About 45 minutes into the protest, protestors were seen entering the Tigert Hall Administration Building and went directly to Sasse’s office door. The students covered the walls with signs and papers with their list of demands.
It is no surprise that these groups are outside again trying to remove Ben Sasse. Leftists on campus have been angry about recent actions by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Governor DeSantis obtained budgets about DEI Initiatives on public college campuses, including the University of Florida, and has since moved to shut these programs down all together.
In an opinion piece written by student Andrew Taramykin, a junior political science student at the University of Florida, told the Alligator in an opinion piece “Sasse, know you face a choice. You can become a Gator. You can become a leader in our community by vowing to hear our voices, to empower our students and workers, and to defend us from those who would encroach on our beloved Swamp.”
Taramykin continued, “Or, you can choose to be an agent of a system that binds and gags what you call ‘the most interesting institution in the country.’”
Sasse emailed students, facility, and staff today addressing his first day as the leader of Gator Nation. In this email, he asked a series of questions including “How will we champion pluralism, curiosity, viewpoint diversity, open debate, and intellectual rigor for our students and faculty, such that our graduates will be prepared to live and work with people of many points of view?”
With anything less than complete capitulation to the ridicules demands of socialist groups on campus, the University of Florida is sure to see many more protests and leftist whining.