Dear Lt. Pike,
I am writing to you as an alumnus of UC Davis and a supporter of the Occupy movement. I fully share the worldwide indignation over your action in brutally macing nonviolent protesters on the UC Davis campus. What were you thinking?
During my tenure at Davis, many students protested the university's investment in companies that dealt with South Africa. Full tent cities were built on the quad. As far as I can remember (and this goes back more than 20 years), no students were injured. These were peaceful protests. Now the civilized world sees a free South Africa.
It happened during the civil rights era, it happened during Vietnam, and it's happening now: Police brutality directed against nonviolent protesters expressing their Constitutionally-guaranteed right to free speech and public assembly.
As a public servant, did you not swear to protest the Constitution of the United States? What was your understanding then of such concepts as "peaceful public assembly" and "free speech?'" Surely you realize that your action was in direct violation of the Constitution. Never mind that it was permitted by the Chancellor.
The British philosopher Edmund Burke once said that all it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. I do not believe you are an evil man. I believe you are a good man, because you have taken on the job of protecting and serving the U.C. Davis community. You have taken an oath; now I am asking you to stand by it. Have some integrity. Don't hide behind the thin blue line. Millions of people around the world have seen what you did. You had no right to do it. There is no excuse for it. You were wrong.
I appeal to you, not as a protester, not as someone with anger or enmity against you personally, but as a fellow US Citizen. Apologize for this terrible thing you have done. It's not too late. The fact that police state means were allowed you does not give you the right to use them. Remember Nuremberg.
Please do the right thing. The world is watching.
Alex S. Johnson
UC Davis BA 1990