Standing Rock event raises awareness, funds

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NCC College Democrats, Student Government Association and Green Scene sponsored a fundraiser for Standing Rock on Feb. 4 in Wentz Concert Hall.

Kevin Oyakawa, a sophomore majoring in computer science and also the president of NCC College Democrats, wants North Central College to be “a central hub” for these types of events. Oyakawa said that they had been working with Occupy Naperville, Sustain DuPage, Bolingbrook mayoral candidate Jackie Traynere, as well as both DuPage and Will County Democrats. The money is being donated to the Lakota People’s Law Project.

Oyakawa estimated that 100 people attended and said the event raised $1,300.

Tyler Allen, a sophomore majoring in political science, said that the timing for the event was not ideal and that they did not think about the Super Bowl when they set up the fundraiser.

Andrew Ruggiero, Sustain DuPage founder, talked about having a line that is crossed. “If we want tea we have to heat that tea with gas that was fracked out West.”

Beth Weiner, ’16, former president of Green Scene, said: “Good to see the group growing and staying active on campus,” adding, “it’s important with the country’s current leadership, to be active, the environment is not at the top of their agenda.”

Dr. Steve Macek, the chairperson of the communications department at North Central College was one of the distinguished speakers at the event. During his speech, he made a connection between President Donald Trump’s immigration policies and government attitudes toward the Native Americans at Standing Rock. Macek also brought up past government immigration policies such as the Chinese Exclusion Act.

According to Macek, the anti-immigrant rhetoric serves to divide and stokes fear and hatred to win support for authoritarian measures.

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Bob Tomaszewski is the Forum Editor for the Chronicle/NCClinked.

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