U students assemble to support Mizzou protesters

Nearly 150 people gathered outside Coffman Union Thursday evening.

Junior Natasha Moore, a communications agent of the African-American & African Studies program, kicks off the demonstration hosted by the University's Black Student Union outside of Coffman Memorial Union on Thursday.

Liam James Doyle

Junior Natasha Moore, a communications agent of the African-American & African Studies program, kicks off the demonstration hosted by the University’s Black Student Union outside of Coffman Memorial Union on Thursday.

Keaton Schmitt

Enduring a wind chill below freezing, a crowd of about 150 gathered in front of the University of Minnesota’s Coffman Union Thursday evening to voice support for protesting students at the University of Missouri, where protests over alleged racism within the school’s leadership have raged. 
 
The demonstration, organized by the Black Student Union, was also used to address issues present on campus, said Javaris Bradford, the president of BSU.
 
“We stand in solidarity because we know what it’s like,” Cheniqua Johnson, BSU’s secretary, said.
 
Speakers from different student groups, such as the Chicano and Latino group La Raza and Asian and Pacific Islanders for Equity and Diversity addressed the crowd and expressed dissatisfaction with the conditions on campus and the unwillingness of the University administration to meet their demands.
 
Bradford read aloud a list of demands directed at the school’s leaders.
 
The demands included a cluster-hire of new faculty members of color as well as instituting a requirement that all University students must take one class in an ethnic studies department in order to graduate.
 
“They don’t want to help us, they just want to feel less [bad] about their privilege,” Bradford said at the demonstration.
 
Natasha Moore, a speaker at the rally and former University athlete criticized the University athletics department’s treatment of athletes of color. 
 
“The athletic department has fostered an environment of tolerating racial harassment,” she said.