Action – Nov 02 – U Nevada Reno
This is a report on a counter-recruitment action at the University of Nevada Reno Nov. 2, which resulted in the UNR College Republicans filing a lawsuit against the protesters.
On Nov 2, Nevada Students for Peace & Solidarity (NSPS), the UNR Queer Student Union, and ANSWER-Reno co-sponsored a protest at the UNR career fair against the presence of military recruiters and their “don’t ask – don’t tell” policy. About 30 people showed up at 12 noon and headed to the auditotium where the career fair took place.
Those with UNR ID’s went in while the rest of us stood outside with signs and banners. Members of the three organizations handed out literature and talked with fellow students, and members of the Queer Student Union held a “kiss-in for justice” to protest the military’s homophobic policies. We were repeatedly told we could not do any of this and that we would have to go to a “free speech zone,” however no one could tell us where these “free speech zones” were located.
The event was succesfull in raising awareness and expressing solidarity between the LGBT community and the anti-war movement, and recieved good press coverage.
On Nov 3, we were haned a lawsuit filed by the VP of the UNR college Republicans against all three organizations, saying we harrassed and physically blocked other students, and asking for a restraining order to prevent us from comng within 50 feet of the career fair (which was already over) and for us to pay their legal fees. After being asked how they could file a restraining order for an event that had already passed, they said they hoped it would be a permanent restraining order. They also later admitted that none of the protesters ever physically prevented anyone from reaching the recuiters booths.
We are currently in contact with the Nevada ACLU and the Partnership for Civil Justice in DC and will probably file a motion to dismiss. We’re almost 100 % sure the lawsuit will be thrown out. It has resulted in a huge increase in press coverage of the event and the movement to kick recruiters off campus though, and reports of the protest and lawsuit have appeared in almost every local media outlet and even in the Advocate, a national LGBT mag. In solidarity,
NSPS & ANSWER-Reno