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Oct 17th Student Loan Rally - Audio and Photos

Here is a 15 minute audio piece and a few photos from the Oct. 17th Student Rally at 5th and Main. About 75 people gathered. One person had a megaphone and people took turns describing their own experience. People described their search for jobs, how much money they owe, how the level of debt is going up even as they make some payment and the general sentiment that they were unlikely to ever be able to pay off their student loans. The point was also made that unlike other loans, student loans are not included in a bankruptcy filing.
According to a press release from the organizers;

"We demand that all student loans be fully dischargeable in bankruptcy court. Because the wealthy have their business and personal debts canceled when they declare bankruptcy. Because when the poor seek to have their debts canceled, they're told that student loan debt is non-dischargeable for life. We seek the total abolition of bankruptcy discrimination against the poor and working classes.

Students have no credit history when they enter college and seek to finance their education with student loans. No one will lend money on such a risky venture. This is the argument for a federal guarantee of student loans. It brings lenders to the table. But because there is no credit history on which the loans are made, student loans are not part of the credit markets. They are part of a modern system of indentured servitude.

We demand an end to the student loan industry. We demand a 100% grant-based system for funding education instead. We demand that all debts be treated equally in bankruptcy courts. We demand bankruptcy discharge of all debts for rich and poor alike.

Poor and working class students have been targeted for financial destruction by their own government. We seek an end to this system of economic predation. Bankers are gorging themselves on the broken dreams of the poor and the vulnerable.

Should naive, inexperienced teenagers from marginalized segments of society be signing life-time non-dischargeable debt contracts with privileged, wealthy, experienced, middle-aged bankers? This maelstrom of exploitation and abuse will end.

The politicians have given the banksters a multi-trillion dollar bailout for their mortgage derivatives catastrophe. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac received billion dollar bailouts. AIG was bailed out. The automakers were bailed out. Where is the bailout for defaulted students? The time is now and there will be action. Join our Facebook group, Student Loan Justice Portland, for information about meetings, events, and activism."

upcoming events 27.Oct.2011 11:48

James

PDX Dragon, thank you for posting the photos and audio!

[1]
Student Loan Justice Portland is having an organizing meeting.
November 7th, 6:30pm - 8pm
Caffe Vita, 2909 NE Alberta St.
It is an open meeting, so everyone is invited. Note that it is at "Caffe Vita", and NOT at "Vita Cafe" which is one block away!!!
 http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=165421656880559

[2]
GENERATION DEBT: Day of Action and Awareness!
Saturday November 12th (1pm to 4pm)
A national day of rallies for student loan reform organized by Occupy Student Debt.
 http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=267992106570115

If you would like to start planning a local Portland event for Nov 12th, contact us ASAP at  dischargethedebt@yahoo.com