Author Archive: Ed Barocas

Occupy your law books, New Jersey

Ed is the Legal Director for ACLU-NJ – an invaluable institution in this state. I’d recommend the 2 .pdf’s he includes below the fold to anyone. A citizenry aware of its rights is a beautiful thing. Good luck today! – JG

A day after New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg threatened to make Occupy Wall Street abandon their belongings, he relented. Unfortunately, when New Jersey State Police came to do the same, Occupy Trenton wasn’t so lucky.

On day seven of Occupy Trenton at the World War II Memorial plaza, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs gave protesters new rules: protesters must attend to their property – which may not include camping or “picnicking” items – at all times.

On day eight, authorities took away protest signs, electronic equipment, laptops and coolers, aided by the State Police, who held onto the items they confiscated.



But here’s one thing the protesters have that the police don’t: the law – and the ACLU – on their side.

Occupy your law books, New Jersey

A day after New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg threatened to make Occupy Wall Street abandon their belongings, he relented. Unfortunately, when New Jersey State Police came to do the same, Occupy Trenton wasn’t so lucky.

On day seven of Occupy Trenton at the World War II Memorial plaza, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs gave protesters new rules: protesters must attend to their property – which may not include camping or “picnicking” items – at all times.

On day eight, authorities took away protest signs, electronic equipment, laptops and coolers, aided by the State Police, who held onto the items they confiscated.



But here’s one thing the protesters have that the police don’t: the law – and the ACLU – on their side.

Legislators set the tone for bullying

Barocas, Legal Director of NJ’s ACLU, suggests our Governor look in the mirror, and our Senate President’s words ring hollow. – promoted by Rosi

It didn’t take long for my feelings of horror and sadness at the suicide of Tyler Clementi to turn into anger – anger not just at the unfeeling young students who so cruelly invaded Tyler’s privacy, but at our state’s leaders who, through their refusal to provide gay and lesbian citizens with full equality, have stigmatized gay and lesbian relationships and set the tone for tragedies like this to occur.

A line from my testimony to the New Jersey legislature during the 2009 marriage equality debate echoed hauntingly in my mind:

“When the state itself segregates people, it grants the rest of society permission to do the same. Through its example, the legislature excuses bigotry and emboldens bullies.”

keep reading below the fold