U Of Texas Student Protester Explains Willingness To Be Arrested

Ann McClure's picture

Billy Yates, a student at the University of Texas, says he didn’t make the decision to get arrested for trespassing lightly.

But civil disobedience — refusing to leave a foyer outside the office of UT President Bill Powers — had become the best option in a campaign to improve working conditions at foreign factories that produce Longhorn apparel, Yates said.

I spoke with Yates by phone on Thursday, a few hours after he was released from the Travis County Jail.

“I got out at 7:30, in time to make my 8 a.m. class,” said Yates, a junior double-majoring in international relations and Asian studies. “We love UT and we love the academics we get there. We just wish the administration would take our concerns seriously.”

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