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Rules for Radicals: Meet the Extremist Berkeley Protesters Who Demand ‘Spaces of Color’

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By Lukas Mikelionis | 3:00 pm, October 26, 2016

Unashamedly radical, full of contradictions, and studying at one of the best universities on earth: meet the radical University of California at Berkeley students who want to establish separate ‘spaces of color’ at their University and don’t seem to like white people.

On Monday, Heat Street reported on the raucous Berkeley protests by students who called for “spaces of color”, while harassing white students trying to study and barring their path across a key bridge. Many observers were dismayed by the protesters’ lack of self-awareness and humorless mien. So who are these students?

Meet Juan A. Prieto, the apparent ringleader of the Berkeley student group “Fight4SpacesofColor” that organized the protest. He describes himself on Facebook as a “Self-entitled punk who rather leach off of the American system than construct a life for himself” (he adds a Communist hammer and sickle to the end of his bio).

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His radical politics are well known. In an article for The Daily Californian, Prieto told readers that he’s an undocumented immigrant living in the US and said:  “So, no, I’m not registered to vote. I’m registered to fuck shit up.”  In another article, which no publication dared to publish, titled “The Language of the Oppressed” he declared: “We are the Third World rising. We are undocumented. And we are unafraid.”

On Facebook, he regularly makes radical comments. He once described the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as “terror” and criticized the Berkeley College Republicans for all being “white men” building a mock Trump wall. He claimed “this is what we mean when we speak of white supremacy on campus TIMES TEN.”

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The radical student also slammed both “racist” major political candidates, adding that either way the November election turns out, the government will enact racist laws to “to keep communities of color from the resources they’ve taken from our lands.”

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Meanwhile Angelica Simsuangco, another figure within the movement, believes in turning education into a giant safe space. On her Twitter profile, she complained about feeling unsafe at the University and suggested that professors who don’t allocate time to talk “about issues that directly affect their students” should not expect “excellent student performance in their class.”

“You need to CARE for your students”, she added.

Mayra Lozano, who attended the now-infamous protest, studies legal studies and political science while minoring in Chicano studies at Berkeley. She accused the University in a Facebook post of trying to “weed” out “folx who are low income, first generation, undocumented, disabled and folx of color”. In another post, she attacked the University for featuring on Facebook a young student at the Republican National Convention, claiming that UC Berkeley oppresses people of color. “Nice to see y’all celebrating this white girl,” she quipped.

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In another racially-infused post, she ranted against white privilege and light skinned “Latinx individuals” for obscuring her struggles. And, she added, “refrain yourself from trying to convince me that ‘not all white people are bad’. I do not need you to, nor do they need you to. They have enough privilege already”.

Lozano also said, “I am very well aware that not all ‘white’ people are bad”, but added that she “tend to not feel safe or comfortable in spaces dominated by them – like this institution.”

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Also in the protests: Claudia Morales Barrera, who in her spare time — when not calling for “spaces of color” on campus — fights against “environmental racism“. She’s an important figure within the organizational body, as pictured below.

Barrera embraces her peers’ radical views. She once shared a post on her Facebook page urging people not to put the French tricolor flag on profile pictures — just a day after terrorists attacked Paris and took 130 lives — because France is guilty of colonialism in the past.

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Now to Naphtalie Jeanty. While she no longer attends Berkeley, she happily participates in protests for “spaces of color”.

Her politics suit the protests: she’s intolerant of dissenting opinion and infused with radical politics. She once posted a text suggesting she won’t be friends with “whites dudes” who don’t share her political beliefs, because they don’t understand the struggle she’s facing. Jeanty also celebrates the Black Panthers movement.

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Is this is the best of Berkeley? Let’s raise a toast — may they enlighten us all.

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