09 May 2015

No Democratization without Decolonization


Authored by: Dr. Francio Guadeloupe, Interim President/Dean of Academics, University of St. Martin (USM). Along with, Drs. Erwin Wolthuis, Division Head of department of Business & Hospitality (USM), and Drs. Sharelly Emanuelson, lecturer Department of General Liberal Arts, USM

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — In case you haven’t heard, there are university students protesting on the streets of Amsterdam. They are irate at what they consider the authoritarian and deceitful attitude of the board of directors of the University of Amsterdam! They claim that they are being told, “just shut up and accept what we say is good for you”.

Dr. Francio_Guadeloupe
Before forcefully being evicted by police officers on horses, students occupied university buildings to protest what they viewed as directors sacrificing their right to proper education at the expense of making profit; selling university buildings and cancelling certain studies based on economic calculations. All about and for the Euros! One of the battle cries of the students is “no real estate speculation with education money”.

The protesting students have been joined by brilliant minds and dedicated teachers—younger university staff—who more than likely will never get a permanent contract that will enable them to get a mortgage to buy a house and raise a proper family if they wish to do so. These university lecturers demand “sustainable career opportunities for all staff”. And, in an act of unprecedented solidarity, their well established colleagues with endowed chairs have joined the battle by championing more “democratization and decentralization of university governance”. A real revolution is taking place. A revolution for a more thorough democratization of Dutch society.