November 13, 2006

Statement In Support of Pace SDS - Our First Amendment Activists

We the undersigned officers of Movement for a Democratic Society, Inc. (MDS), denounce those actions and policies of Pace University that abridge or annul the First Amendment of the US Constitution. If a matriculated student cannot express her/his views in a nonviolent manner that seeks, first and foremost, to educate - on the grounds of an institution of higher education - something is seriously amiss. If Free Expression is denied on the grounds of a college campus where is it protected? If Free Expression is abrogated in a time of war, when it is most needed, all of our lives are impoverished as a consequence.
We call upon President David Caputo to cease the attacks on free expression and privacy at his university; to cease detaining students and first amendment activists who are performing their civic duty on the grounds of his institution. We demand that Pace University stop the harrassment of Students for a Democratic Society, a student-led political organization.
We stand with the student activists who have been threatened with arrest for the crime of free expression; we stand with the students who have been threatened with “summary suspension” from university property and housing for the act of standing up for civil liberties. We salute their efforts to educate one another and the larger community of scholars.
We urge President Caputo to investigate this matter and provide the proper training for his staff to ensure that the rule of law prevails on his campus. The egregious violations of students’ civil rights must cease. It is incumbent upon President Caputo to ensure his staff is fully trained and fully supportive of those students who feel that responsibility is the unavoidable corollary of freedom - and who demostrate this by their service to the community in which they reside.
Alan Haber, Co-President
Penelope Rosemont, Co-President
Jay Jurie, Vice-President
Bruce Rubenstein, Treasurer
Thomas Good, Secretary