U of M prof opposes school hiring police ‘in the city of the George Floyd Uprising’

Professor Nathaniel Mills said that he wishes the university would begin "investing in other means of community safety," rather than expanding the police department. 

Background: University of Minnesota PD/Facebook. Left: Nathaniel Mills/University of Minnesota College of Liberal Arts

A University of Minnesota English professor expressed his opposition to the school hiring more police officers in a recent post, despite the high rate of crime that surrounds the Twin Cities campus.

English professor Nathaniel Mills — “Nate ‘Negative Nancy’ Mills,” as he calls himself on Twitter — stated in a tweet that, “In consistency with the city of Minneapolis, the University of Minnesota has decided, in the city of the George Floyd Uprising and continued racist police violence, that it too needs *more* police officers.”

The tweet features a screenshot of a statement from the Office of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Operations. The email says that the U of M will hire three officers to replace recent retirees and add three new positions, bringing the total roster to 61 officers.

The email also notes that a full-time social worker was hired to “provide alternate resources for certain cases.”

Mills told Campus Reform that he wishes the university would begin “investing in other means of community safety,” rather than expanding the police department.

The decision to hire more police officers comes after three students were shot in Dinkytown, an area just blocks away from the East Bank campus. Last weekend, Minneapolis saw three homicides within 24 hours, and homicides in 2020 reached an all-time high in Minnesota, with Minneapolis seeing one of the largest homicide increases in the nation.

Four local unions representing University of Minnesota employees have demanded that campus police be disarmed, something that is also supported by Students for a Democratic Society at the school.

In May of 2020, the University of Minnesota limited its relationship with the local Minneapolis Police Department. The decision came after the student body president demanded an investigation into the school’s relationship with the police.

Mills’ bio on Twitter states that he is a “fan of Marxism.” Much of his research and publications center around Marxism. He was also a proponent of a work stoppage if the university did not impose a vaccine mandate, which it did earlier this week.