In the recent student body elections at the University of South Florida, the student population voted overwhelmingly to divest from money hungry and corrupt corporations. These corporations violate human and civil rights and damage our environment.
Despite this overwhelming pressure to change this investment policy, President Judy Genshaft refuses to divest from these companies. Why? Because by investing in these companies brings USF more money. When we pay our tuition, a portion of that money goes to investment companies in order to cycle more money into the university.
So why is this such a bad thing?
These companies are destructive and corrupt. BP, who's oil rig broke and destroyed the Gulf of Mexico, is just one of the companies USF is invested in. Others include CCA, a private prison company who makes money off of mass incarcerations and encourages laws that target the mass incarcerations of Black and African American people, and Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grunman, companies who profit off of providing weapons of mass destruction to oppressive regimes that use these weapons against their civilians.
An overwhelming 89% of undergraduate and graduate students voted to end these investments. Conservative and liberal students alike agreed that our money shouldn't be invested in these corrupt companies. We shouldn't be paying for these corrupt corporations, allowing them to continue doing awful things to citizens and our environment.
Divesting from these companies isn't a new idea either. Reputable universities like Stanford and Columbia have already divested from these companies. Yet the university's administration refuses to acknowledge the referendum.
We need to continue to pressure Genshaft and the rest of the administration to back out of these investments so we can stop enabling war, mass incarceration, and environmental disasters.
USF is a great school, make it better by eliminating funding to these awful corporations. Help make USF divest.