SJP at Marquette joins divestment movement
The following article was written by members of Students for Justice in Palestine at Marquette
Divestment is a term that has been attracting an immense amount of attention on campuses across the nation and now Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at Marquette University in Wisconsin has joined the movement.
SJP Marquette has constructed a resolution asking the University to remove its investments from companies and corporations that profit from human rights violations. SJP Marquette is determined to have a successful campaign, which stems from the belief that Marquette as a Jesuit university should be abiding by its Jesuit and catholic values, therefore not remaining complicit in the human rights violations of those on the other side of the world.
This campaign is a nonviolent movement that seeks to ask that the University reconsider its investments in companies that profit off of the repression of basic human rights and invest only in corporations that abide by the institution’s values, which promote human dignity and ethical behavior. Marquette claims that as an institution it “closely follows guidelines established by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.” Therefore,we are asking as pursuant to the guidelines put in place by the conference, which includes “protecting human life, promoting human dignity, reducing arms production and pursuing economic justice,” that Marquette aligns with such terms by divesting from companies that counter our moral values.
Since the emergence of MU DIVEST, SJP Marquette has received support from over 700 students, faculty, and Alumni that have signed onto a petition calling on the University to divest from companies that profit from violence and go against our moral consciousness as humans.
Caterpillar, a company Marquette invests in, has been cited for their complicity in the violation of human rights by providing tools and bulldozers routinely used in the destruction of Palestinian homes.
Another company on the radar is United Technologies, which is responsible for manufacturing F-16 Fighter Jets. F-16 jets have been cited by The United Nations Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict as being used against Palestinian civilians in air strikes over densely populated areas— A direct violation of international law.
Additionally, Hewlett-Packard’s technology is prevalent at checkpoints throughout the occupied territories. These checkpoints prevent Palestinians from freely traveling, it places restrictions on reaching educational institutions, places of work, and hospitals that lie within surrounding areas.
This would not be the first time that Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions has been used to end Apartheid. BDS campaigns were used in the wake of the Apartheid South African regime. This tactic placed international pressure on South Africa to put an end to the Apartheid.
Such a victory fuels our motivation to seek a just and moral advancement within our university’s environment. Divestment campaigns will continue to be launched at schools across this nation in hopes of seeing an end to profiting from human suffering around the world.
SJP at Marquette calls upon its university to be one of those that will stand on the right side of history, promoting the human dignity of all people on Earth.