Student Protest Over Transit Cuts a Dud

“Thousands” of students were expected to show up at the Governor’s Executive Chambers in midtown yesterday to tell Governor Paterson not to cut their free or discounted bus and train rides to school, according to a press release issued prior to the event.

Well, the event turned out to be more of a non-event. Organizer Tony Herbert said all of two students (and their parents!) made it out to Paterson’s office. “It really didn’t happen,” he concedes. “It didn’t have the same amount of steam as previous student protests.”

It having been Martin Luther King Day and all–ya know, he of the public transit boycott in Alabama back in ’55 and all–one might’ve hoped for a little more fighting spirit from the kids of New York.  

Herbert says the unseasonably warm temps might have prompted some students to find more enjoyable uses for their day off.

Herbert says the governor did not mention the student MetroCard issue during his budget outline today.

Unbowed, Herbert says he’ll continue to mobilize students to fight for their freebie transit passes, and is considered a “stay-out” in case the state signs off on the MTA’s proposed budget, which includes nixing the free rides. “We might keep kids home from school a couple days,” he says.  

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