Down With the Struggle: Missouri ‘Hunger Striker’ Son of Wealthy Railroad Executive

Posted by on Nov 11, 2015 at 7:38 am

Wait until all the grifters and hangers-on find out how much his daddy makes. By then he’ll be back at home checking his privilege.

Jonathan Butler, a central figure in the protests at the University of Missouri, is an Omaha native and the son of a railroad vice president, the Omaha World-Herald reports.

Butler refused food last week in a move to force the university system’s president, Timothy M. Wolfe, from office. Wolfe resigned Monday and Butler ended his hunger strike.

Jonathan Butler played high-school football at Omaha Central High, where he won a state championship, and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Mizzou, the newspaper reports. He is working toward a master’s degree in educational leadership and policy.

He is a member of a prominent Omaha family. The newspaper says that Butler’s father is Eric L. Butler, executive vice president for sales and marketing for the Union Pacific Railroad. His 2014 compensation was $8.4 million, according to regulatory filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

He was supposedly influenced by Ferguson, a wholly manufactured protest movement after thug Michael Brown was put down after he tried to wrestle a gun away from a police officer. A shame he was duped by the media and race hustlers. Maybe he’d be doing something with his life instead of being a 25-year-old student causing trouble.

Butler, an Omaha, Neb., native, said Ferguson was the first time he’d seen black collective action on a mass scale. For a month, he shuttled the 100 miles from campus to Ferguson. “It was monumental in terms of how it influenced me,” Butler said, calling what came next “the post-Ferguson effect.”

Butler began organizing with other students — emphasizing that he was just one player among several — and eventually became one of the 11 students who surrounded Wolfe’s car at the university’s homecoming parade in October. Wolfe didn’t talk to the students as police arrived to force them away.

It was a signature moment. Informally, the students started calling themselves “the brave 11.” Officially, they became founding members of a movement named Concerned Student 1950, a reference to the year the first black student was admitted to the university.

As Wolfe seemed to stumble when confronted by the students’ demands for some kind of decisive response to racial discomfort on campus, he only became a bigger target. Wolfe stopped tweeting. Activists saw him as uncommunicative and confronted him outside a fundraiser in Kansas City.

Butler decided more drastic action was required.

“We did our due diligence,” Butler said. “We wrote letters. We sent emails. We sent tweets. We’ve been to diversity forums. We’ve attended different organizations. We’ve done rallies. We’ve done all the other things, trying to get our voices heard in other formats. … We’ve been doing these things for the past year, year and a half — no response.”

So on Nov. 2, Butler announced he was going on a hunger strike until Wolfe quit.

“It’s not just racism, it’s not just sexism, there’s so many things happening on campus that have to be corrected, we have leadership that’s not competent enough to even empathize with students,” Butler said Tuesday.

He’s still apparently fabricating incidents that ironically in this day and age have never been captured on film or with smartphones.

Journalists who flocked to the tent city in response encountered signs on the public quad telling the media to stay out, calling the site a safe space.

Butler said antagonists had stopped by and taunted him by waving candy bars at him and other activists. He said protesters were disturbed by recurring verbal attacks on campus and by journalists who were intruding on intense debates happening privately inside the tent area.

Amazing when omnipresent cameras don’t happen to capture these alleged incidents.

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