On October 4, Jim Gilchrist, a leader of the racist anti-immigrant Minutemen group, came to speak at Columbia University. Gilchrist's hate speech was met with a peaceful demonstration in which students came on the stage unfurling banners reading "No human being is illegal" and "No to racism". The Minutemen responded with force, punching and kicking protesters. Footage of the assaults can be seen at ><http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N41eXtVK7hA>.
University president Lee Bollinger issued a statement condemning the non-violent protest and remained silent about the Minutemen's violence. Please contact Bollinger's office to express disapproval with his statement and ask that no reprisals are taken against the protesters.
Email him at <firstname.lastname@example.org>. Please send copies and messages of support to the Columbia Protesters' Defense Committee at <email@example.com> and sign an online petition at <http://www.petitiononline.com/nominute/petition.html>.