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News ::
RACIST POLICE ATTACK ON RESPECTED UMASS-BOSTON PROFESSOR (english)
05 Apr 2003
Modified: 07:50:03 AM
A STUDENT WAS HANDING OUT FLYERS ON THURSDAY AT UMB CAMPUS TO PROMOTE A MOMENT OF SILENCE AT NOON ON FRIDAY, THE 35TH ANIVERSARY OF dR. kING'S MURDER. THE STUDENT, WAS WEARING A SHIRT WHICH SAID "MILITARY RECRUITERS OFF MY CAMPUS!" ON THE BACK AND THE FRONT SAID "EDUCATION NOT ENLISTMENT". THE POLICE WERE CALLED BY THE RECRUITERS AS A REACTION TO THE SHIRT. A PROFESSOR, TONY MENELIK VAN DER MEER, STUCK UP FOR TONY NARO AFTER BEING TOLD BY A RECRUITER THAT "SINCE HE WAS ORGANIZING FOR kING HE SHOULD BE SHOT IN THE HEAD. a VERBAL BATTLE ENSUED AND THE RECRUITER WAS LEFT ALONE AND THE PROFESSOR ARRESTED AND ROUGHED UP.
TONY NARO, A STUDENT AT UMASS BOSTON WAS ATTACKED BY CAMPUS POLICE AND MILITARY RECRUITERS ON THURSDAY, ALONG WITH HIS PROFESSOR, TONY MENELIK VAN DER MEER. THE INCIDENT BEGAN WHEN NARO WAS HANDING OUT FLYERS PROMOTING A TWO MINUTE MOMENT OF SILENCE AT NOON ON APRIL 4TH IN REMEMBERANCE OF DR. KING, IT WAS 35 YEARS AGO THAT HE WAS MURDERED. NARO WAS WEARING A SHIRT WHICH READ ON THE FRONT "EDUCATION NOT ENLISTMENT" AND ON THE BACK "MILITARY RECRUITMENTS OFF MY CAMPUS!" THE RECRUITERS, WHO WERE 3-4 FEET AWAY FROM NARO FLYERING BEGAN TO "HECKLE" HIM CALLING HIM A "FUCKING COMMUNIST" AND OTHER EXPLICT NAMES. THEY THEN PROCEEDED TO CALL THE CAMPUS POLICE, FOR REASONS NEVER REVEALLED TO NARO. THE POLICE MADE NARO VERIFY THAT HE WAS A STUDENT AND THEN WHEN IT WAS VERIFIED THEY WANTED HIM TO VERIFY HE HAD PERMISION TO HAND OUT THE FLYERS ON CAMPUS,(THIS HAS NOT BEEN AN ORTHODOX PRACTICE/PROCEDURE AT UMB UNTIL AS OF LATE)AS NARO WAS "INESTIGATED" FOR HIS LEGITIMACY MORE OFFICERS ARRIVED AT THE SCENE, ALL SHAKING HANDS WITH THE RECRUITERS AS THEY APPROACHED THE AREA. SHORTLY THEREAFTER 5 MORE STUDENTS FROM NARO'S CLASS AND PROJECT ARRIVED AND IT WAS FUTHER SHOWN THAT THE HANDING OUT OF SUCH FLYERS WAS LEGITIMATE. HOWEVER THE POLICE THEN BEGAN TO QUESTION THE STUDENTS OF THEIR LEGITIMACY! THANKFULLY PROFESSOR TONY VAN DER MEER OF THE AFRICANA STUDIES DEPT ARRIVED AND IT LOO0KED AS IF ALL WAS WELL, HE COULD EXPLAIN AND SEAL THE LID ON THE ENTIRE CONFLICT. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT HOWOEVER CHANGED UMB FOREVER. A RECRUITER APPROACHED NARO AND AS HE WALKED BY NARO HE YELLED, "HEY YOUR DOING SOMETHING FOR dR. kING! YOU SHOULD GET SHOT IN THE HEAD!" INFURIATED THE STUDENT REPLIED TO A SIMILAR EXTENT "YOU SHOULD GET SHOT TOO!" THE PROFESSOR THEN YELLED TO THE RECRUITER THAT HE COULD NOT SAY THAT TO NARO. THE RECRUITER THEN GOT INTO VAN DER MEER'S FACE YELLING THE PHRASE HE YELLED AT NARO, MAKING A ASSOCIATION BETWEEN VAN DER MEER, A BLACK LEADER, AND KING WHO WAS ASSASINATED. THE RECUITER THEN POKED THE PROFESSORS LEFT SHOULDER AND VAN DER MEER YELLED "DON'T TOUCH ME!" A POLICE OFFICER THEN RUSHED OVER AND INSTEAD OF NEUTRALIZING THE SITUATION AND TAKING CUSTODY OF THE RACIST, ABUSIVE, AND AGGRESSIVE RECRUITER, TACKLED THE PROFESSOR, SEEN BY POLIUCE APPARTENTLY AS A ANGRY BLACK MALE WHO NEEDED TO BE CUFFED....THE POLICE CLAIMED THAT IT WAS VAN DER MEER WHO WAS THE AGRESSOR AND ALSO CLAIM TO NOT HAVE HEARD ANY COMMENT BY THE RECRUITERS MADE, IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT THERE ARE 15+ WITNESSES WHO HEARD THE THREAT AND WHO WERE MIXED IN WITH EIGHT POLICE.
vAN DER MEER'S HEARING WILL BE ON MAY 28TH.
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Fuck. (english)
05 Apr 2003
That's fucked up stuff. What is going to happen with this? Any other info? Who's involved with defense or publicity about this?
AP story and Globe story (english)
05 Apr 2003
Damn. What are folks at UMass doing and can anyone else help? I will write to the email address.

-------


UMass Prof Arrested After War Words Scuffle
Argument Sparked By Exchange With Recruiter

POSTED: 7:33 a.m. EST April 4, 2003

BOSTON -- A UMass Boston professor was arrested for assault after a heated exchange with a National Guard recruiter Thursday.

Eyewitnesses said before the arrest the recruiter told professor Tony Van Der Meer and a student they should be shot in the head for their antiwar views.

UMass student Tony Naro said it started when the recruiter began heckling him while Naro was passing out leaflets. Naro was wearing a T-shirt that read "Military Recruiters Off My Campus."

Students said Van Der Meer and the recruiter eventually went nose to nose. Campus police tackled Van Der Meer and arrested him.

Students said the professor never touched the recruiter, but in his report, the recruiter said he was shoved.

A National Guard spokesman said they'd look into the incident.


=======

Professor, recruiter face off at UMass
Witnesses describe heated words, threats

By Douglas Belkin, Globe Staff, 4/4/2003

In another sign of increasing tensions on college campuses over the war in Iraq, a professor at the University of Massachusetts at Boston was arrested yesterday and charged with assaulting a police officer after he exchanged heated words with a National Guard recruiter.

Eyewitnesses said the recruiter told adjunct professor Tony Van Der Meer and a student that they should be shot in the head for their antiwar views.

A Massachusetts National Guard spokesman, Captain Winfield Danielson, said the Guard is going to look into what happened yesterday at UMass and will take appropriate action.

The skirmish is the latest in a growing list of incidents in which simmering tensions about the war have boiled over on high school and college campuses.

On Wednesday at Wheaton College in Norton, students replaced an upside-down American flag with a sign citing the First Amendment after they received a death threat for their antiwar activism.

The day before, in California, administrators at Mater Dei High in Santa Ana canceled classes, citing concerns for student safety and warning of the potential for violence at an antiwar rally planned near the school.

At UMass-Boston, spokesman Ed Hayward said the university will review yesterday's incident and its policy toward recruiters on campus. He said he knew of no other clashes on campus between antiwar organizations and war supporters.

The confrontation, which began with activists handing out information on various causes, disintegrated into a shouting match, with students screaming at the guardsmen and campus police, eyewitnesses said.

UMass student Tony Naro said the recruiter sparked the dispute by heckling him as he passed out leaflets to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the fatal shooting of Martin Luther King Jr.

''He called me a [expletive] communist,'' said Naro, a senior, who was wearing a black T-shirt with the words ''Education Not Enlistment'' on the front and ''Military Recruiters off My Campus'' on the back.

The two argued, and campus police were called because someone was ''blocking the guardsmen from handing out informational pamphlets,'' according to the police report.

As the guardsmen packed up their literature and began to leave, Van Der Meer walked into the lobby. It's unclear what happened next, but a half-dozen students and Van Der Meer later said that one of the four guardsmen turned to Naro and the professor and said: ''You should be shot in the head.''

''No. You should be shot in the head,'' replied Van Der Meer, according to Shauntell Foster, a senior and a student of Van Der Meer's. Students Theresa Myrthil and Bethanie Petitfrere said they also watched the confrontation.

According to the police report, which did not record their words, the men were screaming at each other, nose-to-nose. An officer stepped between them.

The students said Van Der Meer never raised his hands or threatened the officer, and that the officer attacked Van Der Meer. In his report, the officer said Van Der Meer shoved him in the chest and told him to ''get out of my [expletive] face,'' and then elbowed him in the chest.

Three UMass-Boston police officers tackled Van Der Meer and wrestled him to the ground, several students said. Meanwhile, students started filing into the lobby and shouting ''Stop police brutality'' and ''Recruiters off our campus.''

After his arraignment and not-guilty plea yesterday Van Der Meer, still wearing the green corduroy jacket that was torn during his arrest, said he did resist arrest after police accosted him. ''I resisted,'' he said to the applause of about 30 students who had come to Dorchester District Court to support him. ''I don't see why I should be assaulted.''

''It's shameful,'' Van Der Meer said. ''It says something about academic freedom.''

Michael Rosenwald of the Globe Staff contributed to this report. Material from the Associated Press was also used.
Re: RACIST POLICE ATTACK ON RESPECTED UMASS-BOSTON PROFESSOR (english)
19 Dec 2003
I applaud the efforts of all those mentioned in the mediation of Prof. Van Der Meers criminal charges made against him. As was stated "A judge ratified an agreement (for “pretrial probation”) under which all the charges against Tony Van Der Meer were essentially dropped," (Tony naro) I would agree that this was an amicable resolution. Prof. Van Der Meer is still held responsible for his criminal conduct that went beyond that of a Professor or US Citizen. Pretrial Probation is not essentially dropping charges by any definition (notice the word probation). It simply means responsibility is accepted and the matter is resolve and justice is done.

I would suggest that when Mr. Naro say's "Despite today's victory, the battle for justice is not over." People listen and act. Do not let relations between the student body and the safety and security forces at UMASS Boston deteriorate any further. If Mr. Naro wants to secure what he calls justice he and others should be vigilante of the conduct of the police and address problems when they arise. Waiting for an explosive situation to bring attention to perceived injustices is merely a dangerous ploy and seldom prudent.

Every incidence of perceived injustice as a result of contact with the UMASS Campus police and/or Security should be documented and immediately have grievances submitted to the police chief or designee for redress. If the action or inaction of the police chief does not satisfy the sense for justice the incident can be reported to the asst. dean for student affairs via a form that will compile data and attempt to further satisfy the need for justice. The assistant deans office enacted this Student contact form just this October so you may not be aware of it. The school and police dept. appear to be making every effort be responsive to the students needs.

Mr. Naro your narrative of the incident laughable, but that a dead subject. Use it for what ever political purpose you like while maintaining some integrity. Your ignorance of proper police procedure is going to hurt you in your civil suit if there is one. You connect what Professor Van Der Meer did with the obliteration of Civil Rights by the Patriot Act because the Campus police responded to a disturbance and had taken action. Your obvious sense of conspiracy in this matter is way out of step with reality and does a disservice to those who are truly being violated by the federal government as a result of the tools police have to carry out investigations were expanded as a result of the the Patriot Act.

As for your post-script "Police Lie" Clarification needs to be made. I will make it for you. Not all police lie. Some police do lie. Some Ex-police officers have comitted Perjury. In certain circumstance police are taught to lie and conceal the truth. Before you jump on the conspiracy wagon again let me say an undercover officer lies quite a bit in the performance of his/her duty. The public often approves of these lies by accepting testimony of the undercover officer without reservation. I use to lie to suspects and victims alike. I would tell dying victims they would be OK. I would lie to a suspect to get information or a confession. Take for instance when dealing with a child molester I would lie to them and tell them I understand why they did what the did to little Tony. When in fact I only wanted to develop a rapport with him to get him to talk. So you see Mr. Naro the reason for cops lying are not always sinister and unjustified.