Cal Poly and protesters clash over anti-war demonstration

May 25, 2018

Cal Poly is reportedly threatening to sanction student protesters for disrupting a university career fair last month while demonstrating against the defense contractor Raytheon. Meanwhile, the student protesters are slamming the university for attacking free speech, and they are claiming “Raytheon runs Cal Poly.” [Cal Coast Times]

On April 19, students calling themselves the “SLO Peace Coalition” entered the career fair with a banner saying “Divest from war. Stop the war machine.” The career fair was a private event, though Cal Poly students were allowed access.

The student protesters sat down with the banner in front of a Raytheon booth and proceeded to sing a song and read a prepared statement. They altered the lyrics of the “God Bless The USA” song, singing lines such as, “You’re killing all across the world for that war money.”

“Raytheon is making a killing off of killing,” the students said while reading the prepared statement in unison. “Raytheon executives, employees and investors are lining their pockets with blood money.”

The demonstrators filmed the protest. After protesting for about 20 minutes, they appeared to leave the career fair by their own choosing, rather than being forced out of the building.

As the camera shut off when the demonstrators walked outside, one protester screamed “Fuck Raytheon!”

About two weeks following the demonstration, student protesters received an email from the Cal Poly Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities alleging they violated the university’s student code of conduct, according to a petition launched by the SLO Peace Coalition. The petition says the student protesters were accused of displaying an unpermitted sign and of substantially disrupting university business, and they were threatened with sanctions.

The petition demands that Cal Poly drop its investigation into the incident. As of Friday morning, the petition has received more than 600 signatures.

“Today, our universities are seeking to punish the speech of peaceful and nonviolent students while allowing the speech of alt-right racists like Milo Yiannopoulos,” the petition states.

Additionally, the petition states campus peace activists are scared the university will threaten their futures, and the student protesters are some of the most outstanding members of the Cal Poly community.

At least one of the students who took part in the demonstration is a frequent protester who routinely demonstrates on the Cal Poly campus. He has done so over the past four years for and against a variety of causes and as part of various liberal protest groups.


I should have been more specific. The military idustrial complex. They keep making billion of dollars in profits on the war(s). The service men/women do not get big money. They should get paid a lot more for what they do.

Bubble of unreality? Absolutely corrrect. Corruption? Absolutely correct. How many more Corey Pierce types are paid by the city/county?

Social Justice Warriors: that sounds like oh I don’t know…maybe like invading Vietnam. You know “The hearts and the minds”. Remember Vietnam? That military “Social Justice Warrior” bullshit worked really well; didn’t it? i

I DO support defence. I DO NOT support invading innocent countries. Right, wrong, or indifferent, ever military brain washes their young people. They are not allowed to disagree or speak up against their policy. And while I disagree on several issues, I DO want to say thank for your service!


mkaney Thank you! I’m glad at least some people can still think. Calpoly is one big cash cow so that conservative slumlords can make money. And the sloganisms such as “fighting for our freedom” is bullshit. We haven’t defended ourselves since world war 2. Invading other countries like Vietnam, Iraq, and Afhganistan is all about making money. Our fine young military servicemen/service women have died for what?


Nonsense. I’m in the military, currently on my third deployment and if we were getting all this money, I’d see some evidence of that. I don’t. With that said, these kids have the right to protest under the Constitution. They’re mistaken, in my view, but they have the right. The Central Coast is basically The Shire, where all the plump hobbits while away their days in blissful ignorance of how bad the real world actually is. And I’m a lifetime local. But SLO is a bubble of unreality. It’s easy to be a Social Justice Warrior in Hobbiton; nothing is on the line.


This is the first protest I’ve seen on campus that was worthwhile. The military industrial complex is the largest of the tax and spend welfare programs. Companies like Raytheon survive off government contracts, not private market sales. True conservatives don’t support militarism nor statism.


It’s funny how all the teabaggers and other right wingnuts are responding negatively to these Cal Poly students flexing their God-given American rights to organize, protest, and free speech.