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Millennial Life: It Was a Good Day

Cassie McClure on

It was a good day at the university. At the start of the day, the masked pro-Palestine student protesters were on bent knees, chalking their requests for a ceasefire on the ground. A military Humvee was parked next to the entrance of the student center, as the Pentagon had come recruiting that day. The university police were already slowly pulling through the parking lot.

At lunch, the faculty unionization efforts were celebrated, with a demand that the university administration recognize the union voluntarily. A faculty member spoke about how, in almost 30 years of tenure at the university, there had been a turnover of 13 administrations. "Who provides consistency for our students?" they asked.

It was a good day at the university. A new interim president had been announced that morning.

Moments later, a UH-72 Lakota helicopter would fly overhead, heading to the central open green of the campus where a small group of protesters with signs and a Palestinian flag shouted at the National Guard members, talking to other interested students. Their chanted refrain about how many babies the uniformed had killed today hung limply in the air, a shrug against the system instead of a hip check.

The fervor was stimulated through the screens of thousand-dollar phones created in places where mothers also starved with their children. With masks removed, the students sauntered back to their business class, being told that continued business growth is inevitable and sustainability, and the concept of enough, is a fallacy. It was a good day at the university.

The National Guard climbed back into their machine made for war but immaculately clean for presentation. Their only recent war had been only against the razor wire they were told set up for the hordes, filled with sons and fathers, mothers and daughters, born on the wrong side of the river, who had come from fields dried up under a stronger sun than they had ever felt before.

It was a good day at the university. A panel of speakers held court about the death of journalism, reflecting how opinion and money had crept into the news and out of the op-ed and editorial pages. Three older white men -- with decades of experience in journalism, art, and commentary -- and one young Hispanic woman, with several semesters of experience -- were on the panel.

 

A woman in the audience asked about influence and responsibility. She asked how one wields the trust they feel had been lost in their industry. The representatives from the fourth estate speculated on how to be robust; they speculated on instilling fear in those who held accountability.

In this, too, they had experience. They had shaken hands with fear before. It came through phone calls, emails, and Zooms, telling them that their position was no longer needed. But there was still fierce hope because that's the wellspring of the written word.

It was a good day at the university. Candy was left at recruiting tables, cupcakes were used to celebrate unions, and cookies were given to the panelists and the audience. There was enough sugar to keep everyone from hunger, but no one was fed.

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Cassie McClure is a writer, millennial, and unapologetic fan of the Oxford comma. She can be contacted at cassie@mcclurepublications.com. To find out more about Cassie McClure and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.


Copyright 2024 Creators Syndicate Inc.

 

 

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