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NCSU-ACLU in the News

Protester’s NCSU visit leads to campus spat
(The Daily Tar Heel)

By Erin Gibson

September 21, 2005

First Amendment rights are a hot topic at N.C. State University after protesters disrupted a Thursday night rally for Cindy Sheehan’s Bring Them Home Now Bus Tour.

The N.C. State Campus Greens hosted the event to give students a chance to hear from the mother of a U.S. soldier killed while serving in Iraq. The N.C. State College Republicans also were scheduled to hold a counter demonstration in the university’s brickyard.

NCSU-American Civil Liberties Union and Campus Greens now are considering taking legal action against the College Republicans for violating their freedom of speech.

Elena Everett, chairwoman of the N.C. Green Party, said she and the College Republicans were told that the groups were supposed to stay on opposite sides of the brickyard.

“They had taken me in for a couple special meetings beforehand because the permit office knew there would be a counteraction,” she said. “They drew us out a map and gave copies to us and to the campus police, so it was clear where we were going to be and where they were going to be.”

College Republicans Vice Chairman Adam Downing said the permit included a map of where their table could be. “We were asked to stay at the table on one side (of the brickyard),” he said.

CR members passed out protest signs and yellow ribbons to anyone who wanted them.

When Sheehan arrived, protesters rushed to the bus — an area Everett says was off-limits to the College Republicans — and a shouting match began.

The controversy is about who was protesting — the College Republicans or other people who attended.

“People who were at the table stayed at the table,” said Brittany Farrell, a CR member who was working at the table. “We just took the grief of everyone who was opposed to Sheehan.”

But she also said that when she heard the commotion by the bus, she ran to see what was happening.

Gene Feldman, former president of ACLU, said he was in attendance to listen to Sheehan, but stepped in to protect the Campus Greens’ and Sheehan’s freedom of speech.

Campus Greens also is filing a complaint against the Campus Police Department for its mishandling of the situation. She said it should have kept the protesters away from the bus.

Campus police Sgt. Jon Barnwell said officers were told only that two groups would be in the brickyard.

“They could be anywhere in the brickyard as long as they weren’t fighting,” he said.

Feldman said police did not help restrain the crowd despite his efforts to get support. He said the disruption led to a violation of the group’s First Amendment rights.

“It was a blatant disregard for the civil liberties that the Greens — that any group — was entitled to.”

Contact the State & National Editor at stntdesk@unc.edu.

Requests for Information Regarding Monitoring and Surveillance of Local Groups
From the NC-ACLU Liberty Newsletter
Summer 2005 issue

On May 18, 2005, the ACLU-NCLF sent a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the FBI office in Washington, D.C., and the FBI field office in Charlotte, NC, on behalf of the ACLU-NC, the North Carolina State University chapter of Student Peace Action Network, the North Carolina State University chapter of Campus Greens, the Raleigh chapter of Food Not Bombs, and an individual member of the Food Not Bombs organization. The college organizations and the Raleigh group had noticed increased police surveillance during group activities. In the FOIA request, the ACLU-NCLF requested all documents regarding the surveillance and monitoring of these groups. The filing of this FOIA request was coordinated with similar efforts of ACLU affiliates in ten states and the filing of a lawsuit by the National ACLU for the FBI's failure to respond to earlier FOIA requests.

To date, we have received no response to our FOIA request. We are considering other options to get answers to our questions.

Dear Danny. . . 2
The following is our response to "Not Everything On Campus Is Worth Your Time" peace in the Technician
August 21, 2005

Due to Mr. Underwood's repeated misrepresentation of the American Civil Liberties Union in the Viewpoint column in recent weeks, we feel it is necessary to clarify the role of the ACLU as a national organization and...

Not Everything On Campus Is Worth Your Time
Opinion Article in the Technician
August 19, 2005

When I was a freshman, I missed my opportunity to roam around Talley Student Center and visit the student organization booths during orientation. In fact, I missed out on orientation altogether. I had no idea what N.C. State had to offer and...

Chapter Member Recalls ACLU Membership Conference
From the NC-ACLU Liberty Newsletter
December 8th , 2004

During the long plane ride over to San Francisco for the conference this summer, I tried to imagine what experiences I'd be embarking upon throughout the next several days. I was excited about watching a special screening of Fahrenheit 9/11, attending the Howard Dean debate, and hearing Richard Clarke's ...

Statement from the President
From the NC-ACLU Liberty Newsletter
December 8th , 2004

Our chapter almost died a year and a half ago, but a committed group of activists got together and brought it back to life. Everyone that started coming to the meetings knew they wanted to protect civil liberties but nobody knew quite how to do it or what to do....

Gell tells story of freedom
Published in the Technician
September 8th , 2004

Alan Gell has been a free man since February, after being found innocent of a wrongful murder sentence and released from death row. But he still doesn't feel right. "When I first got out of prison, It was hard to sleep," Gell said. "When I was on death row, I knew everybody's name. When I went into Wal-Mart for the first time after I got out, I was surrounded by strangers."

'March Against Madness' makes a stop at State
Published in the Technician
March 31, 2004

The Free Expression Tunnel served as more than a canvas for graffiti on Tuesday as students and leaders in the pro-choice movement held a rally at its entrance during the afternoon.The purpose of the rally was to speak out against anti-abortion legislation and promote the upcoming March for Women's Lives on April 25 in Washington, DC.

Discussion Explores PATRIOT Act
Published in the Technician
February 12, 2004

On Tuesday, the N.C. State Libraries along with the Wake County chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union hosted a panel discussion, "The Freedom to Read: Does the USA Patriot Act Compromise Your Rights?" The event was to inform the community about the Patriot Act, address issues of the legislation that relate to libraries and discuss how libraries address those issues. Clayton Stalnaker, a former NCSU faculty member and ACLU board member moderated the discussion.

ACLU Booth Asks For Clemency; Governor Issues Stay
Feb. 4, 2004

Members of the N.C. State chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union struck out against the death penalty this week, urging students in the Brickyard to phone Gov. Mike Easley and ask him to grant clemency to death row inmate George Page.

NPO still under discussion
Feb. 1st, 2004

Going back at least five years, older N.C. State students and alumni remembered the unofficial back-to-school bash on Brent Road. Once a year, it was common to see a crowd of more than 2,000 gather to celebrate the first weekend of the fall semester. Mix in enough alcohol and a couple unhappy neighbors and the result is what the City of Raleigh calls a nuisance.

NCSU Libraries, ACLU Host Panel to Discuss Patriot Act
Jan. 20, 2004

The North Carolina State University Libraries and the Wake County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) will cosponsor a panel discussion on the USA Patriot Act at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, February 10, in the D.H. Hill Library Assembly Room. The two-hour event is free and open to the public.

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