ACLU, Reverend Jarrett Maupin Ask That ASU Not Expel Students at "MLK Black Party"

Categories: ASU

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and local Reverend Jarrett Maupin both have asked that ASU not expel students who attended an "MLK Black Party" hosted last week by fraternity members.

The ACLU has chimed in saying the students' actions are protected under the First Amendment, while Maupin, in a separate statement, now admits he erred in calling for the students to be expelled from ASU.

See also:
-ASU Frat's Recognition "Permanently Revoked" by University for "MLK Black Party"

ASU administrators permanently revoked the recognition of Tau Kappa Epsilon as a fraternity last week, after photos surfaced of an "MLK Black Party," on the King holiday, in which the attendees were dressed in basketball jerseys and bandannas, threw up gang signs, and used a hollowed-out watermelon as a drinking vessel.

Maupin, a local black activist, held a press conference on the ASU campus in Downtown Phoenix, calling for the students to be expelled. He's since changed his mind.

"We cannot call for the academic destruction of those blinded by bigotry or ignorance," he says. "We must find the strength, despite our anger and rage, to restore their sight that they might see intellectually and socially that all people are equal and made in the image of God."

Maupin continues, "We are our brothers' keepers, so let me be the first to vouch for the fools. I demand second chances for them all. I am rescinding my demand that Arizona State University expel any students connected with the infamously immoral masquerade -- though, I fear people on both sides of this issue will crucify me for it."

On this issue, Maupin's not quite on the same page as Michael Meyers, the head of the New York Civil Rights Coalition, who's also black. The two had a something of a war of words last week, as Meyers argued that the students shouldn't be punished. The two don't agree on whether the TKE party was racist, but Meyers didn't think the students should have been punished at all. Maupin's still calling for some punishment.

Immediately after the party, an ASU spokeswoman told New Times that the University "can and will take additional action against the individuals involved," but there's been no additional word on that.

ACLU of Arizona legal director Don Pochoda also implored the University not to take action against individual students, despite how tasteless the party was.

"It is well established that governmental retaliation based on disagreement with students' words or messages is antithetical to the fundamental protections of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution," Pochoda wrote in a letter to ASU President Michael Crow. "It is easy for governmental bodies, including public universities, to allow speech and expression that it favors. History demonstrates that coercive governmental powers are primarily aimed at minority and unpopular views. The test of our constitutional protections is whether they will be heeded when faced with distasteful, or even hateful, statements."

Crow, in his only public statement on the matter, floated the idea of disciplinary action against the students:
" . . . the ASU Student Code of Conduct sets forth the standards of conduct expected of students who choose to join our university community. At ASU, students who violate these standards will be subject to disciplinary sanctions in order to promote their own personal development, to protect the university community, and to maintain order and stability on our campuses."
See the full statements from the ACLU and Maupin on the next page:

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Rev. Maupin and his fellow African American rights activists (the title: "civil rights" is indicative to all of the public) demanded that ASU expel the fraternity, and the students hosting, going or affiliated with the frat MLK party, and in addition to expulsion demands, hire more African Americans at ASU, these activists made threats against ASU if the activists did not get their demands met.

This is extortion.

ASU surrendered to their coercion and in doing so violated the students' First Amendment Rights.

ASU admits this same fraternity was placed on "probation" which amounts to a warning for an incident involving violence against a rival fraternity. ASU and their answer to the problems their fraternities routinely exhibit was to remove them from the campus. But as for any discipline, including underage drinking, death(s) caused by underage drinking and other instances where students' lives were in danger, ASU fall short.


I guess the race-baiter finally came to his senses -- probably because of the nasty letter I sent him.


Enough with this frat's getting old... move along people!

ExpertShot topcommenter

"I can think of no greater extreme action than to chance the ruin of my reputation . . ."  LOL.  You have a reputation of trying to get your mug in front of the cameras at EVERY opportunity.  When was the last time I saw you at a fundraiser or community volunteer event where there weren't plans to have the media there?  NEVER!  In fact, I rarely see Tillman, or any other of the so-called "leaders" I see in front of the cameras out in the Community in South Phoenix. 

You want to save your reputation?  Walk or drive your bike in the neighborhoods in South Phoenix and just learn from the people - we have leaders doing stuff all the time here - community gardens, legal clinics, health care clinics, food box giveaways and all sorts of birthdays and weddings that would probably teach you a little bit about your community (if you even live here).  


I am confidant that if there is a solution to bigotry and racism in the world, it will be found at and by Arizona State University. You cannot convince me otherwise.


"I demand second chances for them all."

I'd say you lost your right to demand anything after waffling on your last demand, that they be expelled. Come back to the public eye once you've found a position you can actually stand on.

fishingblues topcommenter

I think this story is just about played out.

fishingblues topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @fishingblues 

You need some new material stinky.  You are simply not very smart are  you?  

What's with the new skid mark under your avatar?  Did you get your tired ass thrown off of the site again?  

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