War is not a career opportunity

February 18, 2009

AMHERST, Mass.--Ten students and community members staged a die-in at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) career fair in front of the U.S. Army and Border Patrol recruitment tables on February 10.

Activists organized the die-in quickly--in only 30 minutes--after the Marines sent out an e-mail to every UMass student inviting people to join them at the fair. The only other organization with this privilege is the UMass administration.

Participants in the die-in lay on the floor and did not budge, even when military recruiters insulted them and career fair personnel told them that they had called the police. Other students seemed supportive of the action, with some asking how they could get involved.

One member of career fair personnel seemed terrified about the event, saying, "If they can do this today, they can do this next year, they can do this tomorrow!"

Other recruiters at the career fair included Raytheon, the ROTC, NAVSEA Warfare Centers and General Dynamics. At a time when working-class students are finding diminishing options for jobs, it's crucial for antiwar activists to challenge the military's exploitation of their fears.

We will continue to protest and organize today, tomorrow and next year, if necessary. Killing people and risking being killed for U.S. imperialism is not a career opportunity.

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