College Claims a Reference to a 129-Year-Old Riot is a Threat

June 8, 2015

By Jesse Walker at Reason Online

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education reports:

Oakton Community College (OCC) is insisting that a one-sentence "May Day" email referencing the Haymarket Riot sent by a faculty member to several colleagues constituted a "true threat" to the college president....

"Merely noting to one's colleagues that May Day is a time when workers 'remember' the Haymarket Riot does not constitute a 'true threat,'" said Ari Cohn, a Senior Program Officer and lawyer with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). "The United States Department of the Interior has designated the Haymarket Martyrs' Monument a National Historic Landmark. If remembering the Haymarket Riot is a 'true threat,' the monument itself would be illegal...

Schools: Oakton Community College Cases: Oakton Community College: Faculty Member Sent Cease-and-Desist Letter for “May Day” Email