February 12, 2003


March Permit Officialy Denied (Newsday, Feb 11, 2003)
A federal judge in Manhattan has denied antiwar demonstrators the right to march in front of the U.N.

U.S. District Court Judge Barbara Jones concluded that heightened security concerns posed by up to 100,000 protesters would threaten the public safety and security of the U.N.

In her 26-page ruling, Jones said that the First Amendment guaranteed the right to protest but did not ensure the right to march.

She noted that demonstrators could hold a stationary rally sanctioned by the city at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, located at 47th Street Between First and Second Avenues. An overflow crowd could gather two blocks north along 49th Street between First and Second.

Christopher Dunn, a lawyer for the New York Civil Liberties Union, said the group would immediately appeal Jones's ruling.

"There is no question in our mind that the First Amendment entitles people to march in the street to protest their opposition to a possible American war in Iraq," he said. "We believe this decision is wrong and intend to appeal it immediately."

Here it is:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Shutting down traffic and taking over the street is, on its face, not peaceable assembly. Posted by Orrin Judd at February 12, 2003 12:31 AM

I'm glad you mentioned the notion of peacable assembly. When any cause rallies a large group of people, there is almost always a malevolent odor to it. For all of Gandhi's posturing, his mobs always came with the implicit threat of "they're peaceful...for the moment. Do you smell something burning?"

It's like having a gang of ten men asking you for a "loan" on the subway.

Posted by: Dreadnought at February 12, 2003 10:37 AM

with no Bernhard Goetz in sight....

Posted by: oj at February 12, 2003 11:27 AM

Unless it happens in Manila.

Posted by: Harry at February 12, 2003 11:30 AM

Mr. Judd;

Given that most of these people consider any criticism
to be a violation of their "rights", this is completely consistent.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at February 12, 2003 11:58 AM
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