Socialists activists start fight to remove ROTC programs from college

Members of the Young Democratic Socialists of America (YDSA) chapter located at City College of New York are fighting to have the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program removed from the school’s campus. On April 20th, an image was posted on Twitter showing a poster created by City College’s YDSA which featured the heading, “R.O.T.C. OFF OUR CAMPUS.”

The top of the poster features a quote that the school’s YDSA chapter attributed to the American Enterprise Institute. It says: “The absence of ROTC in CUNY prevents the military from taking full advantage of their large, ethnically diverse populations. The plan is to put the diversity of the CUNY student body in service of the U.S. military, especially as military engagements are increasingly in the Middle East and the global South.”

On the bottom half of the poster is another pair of statements, which read: “THE RICH WILL NEVER DIE FOR YOU. DON’T DIE FOR THE RICH.”

In a February tweet, City College’s YDSA chapter sent out a tweet showing an image of an ROTC poster and the caption: “Let those who wage war, fight war. ROTC off our campus.”

On Wednesday, according to a report by Fox News, New York State Assemblyman Kieran Lalor, who is also a Marine Corps veteran, asserted that ROTC programs need to remain on campuses.

“The left doesn’t like [the ROTC] because the left doesn’t like the United States,” said Lalor.

Lalor stated that the City College chapter of YDSA is allowing their disdain for the military to “trump” the fact that ROTC can present students with a range of opportunities.

“They’re willing to get rid of that because they don’t like the country,” said Lalor.

Currently, ROTC programs are offered on more than 1,100 college and university campuses across the United States.