California college has only one pro-Palestinian protester because city is blue-collar and conservative, political science prof says

While pro-Palestinian protesters disrupted colleges across the country, one institution of higher learning in California could only muster one single protester for the cause.

That’s because Cal-State University at Bakersfield is too blue-collar and conservative, says one political science professor.

“This is largely a blue collar school where students are more concerned with getting their degrees and getting on with their lives than anything else,” said CSUB professor Mark Martinez to KGET-TV.

The Cal-State system was specifically designed to serve students who live in California and can attend classes while still living at home.

“It’s primarily a commuter school, too, and that has an effect on campus culture and therefore the tendency toward activism,” he explained.

“Bakersfield is a conservative city, and that plays a role,” Martinez added.

KGET spoke to the single, solitary protester who held up a poster with the Palestinian flag on campus.

“My daughter is at UCLA protesting and I thought — I don’t know if Bakersfield was going to join in, but I thought I would just do something,” said part-time lecturer Carolyn Lane, “instead of feeling helpless and hopeless, join in.”

She said her 10-year-old daughter painted her Palestinian poster for the protest.

“I figured a protest of one was better than none,” she added.

Freshman Brayan Garcia told KGET that it just wasn’t in the nature of the students at the school to protest.

“They don’t really like making that much noise. I mean, we don’t have a football team to begin with, if you get me,” said Garcia.

Martinez went on to offer another reason students didn’t care to protest against Israel.

“I think the relative lack of interest in the Study Abroad program is a factor. Study Abroad is an important program because it fosters an understanding of global events and attitudes. Many students here at CSUB just see it as a luxury they don’t have the time or money for,” he added.

While the campus continued to stay relatively peaceful, after this report aired, a larger number of pro-Hamas protesters showed up at the university. Officials said the protesters organized the one-hour rally with them.

The CSU system said in a statement that it did not intend to change its investments in relation to the Israeli-Hamas conflict.

Bakersfield is a city of about 400,000 residents in the San Joaquin Valley about 113 miles north of Los Angeles.

Here’s more about CSU Bakersfield:

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