Derrick, a member of Occupy San Francisco, sits in front of California Highway Patrol officers dressed in riot gear during a demonstration against cuts to higher education held at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, March 5, 2012. Thousands of students, teachers and supporters marched to the Capitol as part of a daylong protest over state budget cuts to higher education.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Demonstrating against the rising costs of higher education, protesters descended on the state Capitol on Monday for a rally that resulted in 72 arrests. Four people were pinched by police early on, notes the L.A. Times, but the bulk of arrestees were taken in after they refused to leave the premises. Outrage was reserved for business hours only, and the Capitol closed at 6 p.m.
At one point during the day, protesters outside began chanting "let them eat" and "pizza now!" when protesters inside the building were reportedly having difficulty accessing bathrooms and were not permitted food or water once the area was sealed off by authorities.
Gov. Jerry Brown did not make an appearance at the hours-long "Occupy the Capitol" tumult, however he commented, via a spokesperson, that students today "are reflecting the frustrations of millions of Californians who have seen their public schools and universities eroded year after year." Referencing a proposed initiative to raise taxes, he continued, "that's why it's imperative that we get more tax revenue this November."
According to reports, occupying and outraged protesters on site numbered in the thousands. The California Highway Patrol, which runs security at the Capitol. declined to estimate attendance.