As convocation came to a close and whispers over a “student disruption” swarmed the campus members and supporters of Florida State’s Black Student Union marched toward the eternal flame at Florida A&M.
“4, 3, 2, 1! Unity for everyone!” was one of the chants shouted as they met up with Ciara Taylor, a senior political science student at FAMU who had just been escorted out of convocation after shouting out against Florida Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll during her speech.
During a brief march break, several FAMU students gathered as Taylor and a few other students shared their thoughts and mission behind the protest.
Taylor expressed her dissatisfaction with Gov. Rick Scott’s administration, mentioning comments Carroll made last month where she said the governor epitomizes the values and vision of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
“What Rick Scott permits in his legislation does not bear any resemblance to that of Dr. King’s values,” Taylor said. “This has really gone too far.”
Separate from Carroll and the convocation, many of the protesters who came to march were doing so because they were offended by recent “indecent hate speech” posted on an anonymous college forum fsuacb.com.
“Rick Scott has passed legislation that specifically targets and denigrates minorities’ ability to vote,” said Michael Sampson, a senior political science student at FSU. “All the hateful speech being used by presidential candidates is being reflected onto university websites like fsuacb, it’s clear that this indecency is trickling from the top.”
Kai Daniels, a sophomore management information systems entrepreneurship student at FSU and current chair member of FSU’s Black Student Union, happens to intern at the Capitol with the House of Representatives for the Democratic Party.
“The Seminole creed promotes diversity, and that’s what we’re encouraging,” said Daniels. “We have to fight against the things that try to divide us. It’s movements like this, being seen and heard at the Capitol. That’s how we combat people who don’t believe in us and don’t think that black students can be progressive at white institutions, or any institution for that matter.”