Nearly a month after its initial introduction, Central Student Government voted against the adoption of a resolution that would have formally affirmed CSG’s support of the people of Ferguson, Mo. and their demonstration efforts following the death of Michael Brown.

The resolution received 22 dissenting votes and 11 affirmative votes.

After being proposed Sept. 16 and postponed Sept. 23, the assembly was given opportunities to propose amendments, three of which were voted upon and passed.

The resolution asked CSG to stand in solidarity with the Ferguson community and against “increased racist, unjustified police brutality,” while supporting any nonviolent actions of youth against this alleged police brutality.

In August, following the shooting of an unarmed Black teenager, Michael Brown, by a white police officer, Darren Wilson, a protest against police brutality escalated as police responded to the protest, accompanied by incidents of looting. The events spurred national discussion this past summer on the topic of racial stereotyping by law enforcement and over-militarized police forces, many voicing the opinion that use of armored vehicles, automatic weapons and body armor was unnecessary for handling the situation.

Past approvedamendments included the removal of militarization language, the phrase “local cops are trained and armed to treat local residents like criminals,” and the addition of language that would only ask CSG to consider supporting efforts of students to stop “racist police acts against minority youth.”

Assembly members discussed amendments to the resolution extensively and, though each proposed amendment passed, the resolution was still voted down, with dissenting voters noting the language as being generally too extreme and overreaching.

The resolution presented to CSG was submitted at 4:54 p.m. Tuesday, two days after the deadline to submit resolutions and did not include previous amendments made and passed by CSG in prior weeks. Those amendments were added and the updated resolution was presented to CSG and voted on.

Among those voting yes for this resolution, LSA senior Michael Chrzan, School of Education representative, said though the resolution was flawed, it was his belief that the CSG body should still have supported the amended resolution.

“Obviously there were ways that it could have been improved,” Chrzan said, “It did not have to be a perfect resolution and I think that this resolution fit the bill enough that it could have been passed. There were no extreme generalizations or inaccuracies and as a person who has lived experienced like these, I will say it is disappointing.”

Stephen Richards said, as the representative of the School of Social Work, he advocates for social justice and believes in this cause and the values set forth in the resolution.

“It is fact that these things do happen to people of color,” Richards said. “I do understand that this assembly is not a majority of people of color and do not have these personal experiences, but all of us do have experiences with these sorts of things. It is hard to reconcile the fact that these things do happen in our communities.”

Members from By Any Means Necessary responsible for recent protests on campus this month and earlier this year were in attendance. BAMN Organizer David Douglass asked CSG to consider the opportunity their resolution presented for minority students on campus to be involved in the Ferguson movement as leaders for campuses across the country.

“We are in a very important historic window. We can make history tonight and stand against this racist murderer,” Douglass said, referring to Wilson. “Students come here because they expect to be a part of a diverse, integrated student body, but they are met with the reality of a segregated and white student body.”

Members who voted for the resolution said they hope to continue to address this issue and develop and present a new resolution in the future.

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