McGill Principal Heather Munroe-Blum told the Montreal Gazette yesterday that she is “sorry” to students who were hurt by pepper spray when riot police showed up at the administration building on Nov. 10. Students have called the response to their occupy-style protest heavy-handed. But Munroe-Blum defends herself by stressing that the occupiers were “masked and hooded,” which frightened the staff. She also added, “when you call the police you don’t tell them how to do their job.” The pepper-spraying at McGill came the same day tens of thousands of Quebec students marched in protest to the annual tuition rise of $325, which will bring fees more in line with the Canadian norm by 2017. Munroe-Blum continues to defend the tuition increases as a way to compete with better-funded schools like the University of British Columbia and University of Toronto. Three police officers at the University of California Davis are on leave after pepper-spraying 11 seated students at an Occupy protest Friday. Those protesters were not masked.
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