Thursday, May 24, 2012

Stanford Caterpillar protest falls flat

The announcement went out to dozens of lists. It read:
Dear People of Conscience,

"The CEO of Caterpillar is speaking Thursday May 24th at 12 PM in Cemex Auditorium. Caterpillar violates international law and principles of human rights by supplying bulldozers to the Israeli military to illegally demolish Palestinian homes. Since 1967 Israel has illegally demolished about 25,000 Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem, Gaza, and the West Bank. The CEO of Caterpillar obviously thinks profits are more important than international law, human rights, and the livelihoods of tens of thousands of innocent people. Join Students for Palestinian Equal Rights to demonstrate against home demolitions and violations of international law and human rights. We will show our discontent with Caterpillar's unethical and illegal business practices Thursday May 24th at 12 PM outside Cemex Auditorium. Stand up for human rights and the tens of thousands of displaced Palestinians."

So, Josh, what if you gave a protest and no one came?

There was a total of 3 protesters standing quietly outside the auditorium, completely ignored and irrelevant. Inside there were about 200 students listening attentively to Caterpillar CEO, Doug Oberhelman. What did they hear? For more than 85 years, Caterpillar Inc. has been making sustainable progress possible and driving positive change on every continent. With 2011 sales and revenues of $60.138 billion, Caterpillar remains the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives, much to the profound annoyance of the BDS cru.

Oh, yes. The issue of Israel never came up.

So Josh Schott. How does it feel to be irrelevant?

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