Protesters’ actions not true civil disobedience

It all started in a mall dedicated to the memory of a man who advocated civil disobedience and respect for individual rights.

As I’m sure you’re all well aware of by now, about 100 NIU students broke the law yesterday when they blocked traffic on Lincoln Hwy.

The protesters did this to let the state legislators know how students feel.

Their motive is admirable.

But their actions really stink.

Martin Luther King Jr. believed that if a law was wrong it was moral and right to break it.

This makes sense.

The protesters yesterday however, wanted media attention to help generate support for their cause. They were not protesting traffic laws or anything else like that. All they wanted was media attention.

Obviously, they felt their action would bring them the greatest level of that attention. To a certain extent, and with the help of The Northern Star, they were successful.

The really funny part about this whole thing is, after the protesters left Lincoln Hwy., they headed right over to Campbell Hall—home of The Northern Star.

Did they have a statement they wanted to make?

Did they think they’d help out Star photographers by giving them another photo opportunity?


emember—we’re talking about NIU’s hardcore liberals here. Why would they do something rational?

What the protesters proceeded to do is call for the editor and start berating the Star for its “bias” and “unbalanced editorial stances.”

This may come as a surprise to some of the protesters out there, but an editorial stance is bias—and nowhere is it written that it must be balanced.

The group also seemed to be disappointed that Star columnists do not agree with most of their opinions.

But through it all, one thing became apparent to me: these protesters are downright jealous that they don’t run this paper and make the decisions.

It doesn’t matter that this newspaper has won numerous awards for its editorials, columns and reporting. No, what matters to the protesters is that the Star has a very high visibility on campus—and it has a mind of its own.

It seems that the local protesters are really frustrated that another—different—point of view exists on campus and has a more constant impact.

These poor souls.

They believe in freedom—but only when it’s their own.

And besides that—they’re stupid.

If they really wanted media attention, what they really needed was an assertive public relations campaign. And going to the local newspaper and shouting down the editor is a major faux pas in public relations.

An intelligent, sophisticated, organized campaign could have had a much greater impact.

Yesterday’s activity, however, had none of those qualities.

All it proved was that NIU is the home for some of the most radical, reactionary, inciteful people in the state.

One of these days—a few years down the road from now—some of these liberals are going to realize that the best way to get something accomplished in this world is to work within the system and cooperate to bring about change.

The truly ridiculous part about the whole controversy between the Star and these radical liberals is that The Northern Star supported the Day of Action in its editorial yesterday. It has also supported Unity Through Diversity and Gay rights—to name a few “liberal” causes.

What it has not supported though, is the breaking of just and reasonable laws—like traffic laws.

One of the protesters said, “Laws were made to be broken.”

This non-argument justifies murder.