Students Who Welcome Jiang Asked to Give up Their Right to Free Expression or Be Sued
(Clearwisdom.net) According to students attending the University of Texas, the Friendship Association of Chinese Students & Scholars (known as FACSS) has required that any student to participate in the Welcoming Group during Jiang's visit must first sign a document relinquishing their U.S. constitutional first amendment right.
Students at the University of Texas in Arlington, said that the FACSS organization emailed a waiver form to Chinese students requiring any who will go to welcome Jiang as part of their Welcoming Group sign an agreement in which they publicly relinquish their right to express their opinion with any other organization(s) in any form of protest. The email came with a threat of a legal action being taken against any student who did not comply with signing the waiver to reliquish their right to freedom of expression.
After learning of this news, Leeshai, a student at Pomona College in California said, "It is 'shocking' for any organization in the U.S. to ask any citizen to give up their right to freedom of speech endowed by the U.S. Constitution. Texas Rice University alumni Jack Hou also said it is "a shame" to break the law under the excuse of enforcing the law.
FACSS also claims in their email, "Anybody who is against this agreement will immediately be sued by our organization."
The original text of the email and waiver are as follows:
In order to protect the purity of our Welcoming Team, in order to protect us to avoid future harassing calls, please sign this legal statement and turn in to your group leader. Anybody who is against this agreement will be sued by our organization immediately.
Many thanks for your cooperation. FACSS
Group X invites _______________ to be a member of the Welcoming Group. In consideration for this invitation, I agree to abide by the rules and regulations of the Welcoming Group. I also agree if any disturbances are caused by me (e.g. protest against the United States and/or President of China) to pay $5,000.00 as minimal damages for any harm that may result from such disturbances to the group's reputation. Also, in regards to disturbances, I agree that if any another group such as, Fa Lun GUNG contact us or we become aware of any threats of disturbance by any other groups, I agree to contact the group leaders of the Welcome Group as well as the proper authorities.
We understand it is our right to protest with any other groups our views and opinions, but in becoming an active member in the Welcome Group, we voluntarily waive any such rights."
A link to the original contract can be found at:
On October 18, Great Epoch published a letter from a reader named Wang Yong, which says, "What right does the FACSS have to fine people? What will these moneys be used for?"
According to information collected by persons at the Falun Dafa Information Center, during the past year, Jiang encountered protests from international human rights groups and religious groups during each of his visits. In order to stimulate interest among the local Chinese people and students to go welcome Jiang, the local consulate would often pay for transportation and meal(s). This is the first time the "Greeters" are being asked to sign a contract to give up their right to protest and express opinions for Jiang's visit to the U.S.
On October 17, the Chinese Foreign Affairs Department officially published Jiang's itinerary in the U.S. Jiang will go to Chicago, Houston and San Francisco next week, he will also visit U.S. President Bush's ranch in Texas, meeting with President Bush at his Crawford ranch on October 25, a meeting that was planned a long time ago. From there he will travel to an APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) meeting in Mexico.