On June 12, 2011 hundreds of students and approximately 50 community members stood together in solidarity protesting, Representative John Boehner, who was picked to speak at spring commencement for The Ohio State University. The protesting of Boehner was sparked by his recent decisions for push forward the Ryan budget that is loaded with cuts that will be a burden to the young graduates.
The students participated in the demonstration by donning stickers on their caps that read, "Don't Cut Our Future" and "O-H-I-O, John Boehner, Oh Hell NO!", and turning their backs to him when he got up to speak. Aiding the momentum of the event community members gathered with signs and banners accompanied by OSU students that were not graduating. Some of the protesters were able to get large banners into the ceremony portraying the graduates sentiments on a larger scale, "Don't Cut Our Future", which were dropped on the westside of the stadium. Overall, the protest was powerful demonstration that Ohioans are dissatisfied with Representative Boehner current voting forms.
It's simple, really. Speaker John Boehner does not support higher education. He wants to cut Pell grants - grants for higher education. Yet he was speaking at the largest institution for higher education in the country. I thought it hypocritical of him and of my institution to sponsor him when he wants to make it more difficult for students to attend college. It's already difficult - I have friends and acquaintances who worked every spare minute so they wouldn't have to take out quite so many loans. I've worked for years - in high school and college - to help pay for my education. Yet when my six-month grace period is over, I will still have huge loan payments to make, and it's only getting worse for future students. I could not sit idly by as the man behind the grant cutting tells me to work hard, and everything will turn out ok. I have worked hard; I still am working hard. Hundreds of thousands of students across the country are working hard. Cutting our funding is not the answer. Making things more difficult for future generations is not the answer.
Speaker John Boehner has repeatedly turned his back on Americans. In supporting Wisconsin governor Scott Walker, Speaker Boehner turns his back on the working-class, on teachers, firefighters, police officers, and many more. In trying to cut funding for Planned Parenthood and attempting to change "rape" to "forcible rape" in regards to taxpayer funding for abortions, Speaker Boehner turned his back on women. Speaker Boehner turned his back on young people; he would like to undo President Obama's healthcare plan (so young people could not stay on their parents' insurance plan) and cut thousands of Americorps jobs, which overwhelmingly go to young people. He mentioned in February that he would not be upset if his spending cuts resulted in job losses, turning his back on unemployed Americans. In voting to ban same-sex marriage and not to support prohibiting job discrimination because of sexual orientation, Speaker Boehner has turned his back on the GLBT community.
I could go on, but I think you understand. There aren't many people Speaker Boehner has not turned his back toward, so I thought it not only fitting, but necessary, that I turn my back on him.