Color protests at universities

– Last generation is aimed at students and brings charges against management –

Lennart Wenzel (27) in front of the orange-marked Technical University of Berlin
More pictures here

Berlin, June 16.10.2023, 8, 25:XNUMX a.m – The week started this morning with Last Generation color protests at 3 universities in Berlin, Lübeck and Wuppertal, 5 more will follow today. At the universities, prominent buildings such as the main building of the Technical University of Berlin were sprayed with orange paint from prepared fire extinguishers. Last week there were similar protests at the University of Leipzig, the Ruhr University (Bochum), the Heinrich Heine University (Düsseldorf) and the Martin Luther University (Halle-Wittenberg). The actions are aimed primarily at the students and employees of the universities. It is an appeal to no longer accept that their work and their future are trampled on by the federal government.

At the same time, the protests are an indictment of university leadership for still failing to take their social responsibility seriously in a rapidly worsening climate crisis.  

Before he sprayed the main entrance of the Technical University of Berlin with paint today using a prepared fire extinguisher, explained Lennart Wenzel (27): “Our appeal today is not just to the federal government, which is currently burning down our future. Our appeal goes to the young people, to all those who will ultimately have to bear the consequences of the catastrophic political failure. Don't allow them to lead us to collapse! Defend yourselves! Take part in the peaceful protest!”

Wenzel is a student of aerospace engineering himself. Instead of doing his master's thesis at a Max Planck Institute, he is now protesting with hundreds of people of all ages for the exit from oil, gas and coal. He emphasizes: “One scientific paper after another describes the destruction that awaits us: people are starving, dying of thirst, and are being forced to leave their homes. Why should we research even more alternatives and solutions that are then consistently blocked by the government? What is a good degree worth on a planet without water or food? Our place at the moment is not in the lecture hall, but on the street!”

Universities, as places of science and progress, also have a duty to communicate honestly about the current emergency situation. However, Germany's universities are still failing to take a clear position against the unconstitutional government policy. By doing so, they are violating their duty of care to students and watching as the government leads us into a future of global, economic and social collapse. 

The color and poster campaigns are at the same time an invitation to students to join the protest and a confrontation with what are probably the most important questions of our time: When, if not now? Who, if not we?

In lectures at the respective universities, people from the last generation report on the need and prospect of peaceful civil resistance in the climate catastrophe and invite you to get to know the movement and start a conversation.