A second federal lawsuit filed in opposition to Florida over its effort to disband pro-Palestinian scholar teams claims the state is both ignoring or doesn’t perceive First Modification rights to free speech.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations is representing the College of South Florida chapter of College students for Justice in Palestine, claiming state college system Chancellor Ray Rodrigues’ order to disband the teams due to a press release made by a nationwide group is unconstitutional.
“Neither the state of Florida nor its state schools and universities are enclaves immune from the necessities and protections of the First Modification,” the swimsuit filed Tuesday reads. “However as soon as once more occasions counsel that Defendants both don’t know that or reject it.”
The American Civil Liberties Union filed a related lawsuit final week representing a College of Florida chapter of College students for Justice in Palestine.
As Israel’s assaults on Gaza have intensified, some faculty college students have expressed solidarity with Palestinians, leading to swift censure from some Jewish teachers and even some potential employers.
Rodrigues claimed when he issued his order final month that Florida college chapters of the group have been violating state legislation by providing help to a terrorist group.
The lawsuit mentioned the USF group isn’t affiliated with the nationwide group, doesn’t have monetary ties to it and doesn’t observe its route.
Rodrigues has since backed off the order whereas consulting legal professionals to see how the state can proceed and whether or not it could actually pressure the teams to pledge to reject violence and Hamas and to observe the legislation.
Requested what motion Rodrigues or the Board of Governors has taken since Rodrigues ordered universities to disband the teams, board spokesperson Tony Lee declined to reply. Lee additionally declined to touch upon the lawsuit.