Librarian ejected from ostensibly public McCain rally for holding a sign

Carol Kreck, a librarian, was arrested and removed from a public campaign event for John McCain in Denver yesterday. She was in front of the Denver Center for Performing Arts, and was charged with trespassing. Can you trespass on public property?

Here’s the video and some more info

3 comments on “Librarian ejected from ostensibly public McCain rally for holding a sign

  1. You sure ’nuff can trespass on public property. It’s through enforcement of “no trespass” that libraries are able keep out people who won’t obey the rules. We never really want to do this, but sometimes it’s the only choice to preserve the environment & workplace.

    The wisdom of the rule enforcement in this particular instance is another question, bound up as it is in free speech. Would you call the cops to kick somebody out of the library if they were holding a sign? Most likely not. If they were holding the sign and blocking a door, it wouldn’t matter what the sign said. If they were holding a sign that said, “This library sucks!” — you might find them to be disruptive. Where do you draw the line?

    In this case, it was a political event, for the purpose of political discourse. So it would seem it would have been to have been wiser to be more tolerant.

  2. I’ll defer to someone with more legal expertise, but I have to wonder how easy it is to charge a library patron with trespass if he’s in the library during regular hours of operation and not in any restricted space? Certain behaviors could certainly draw a citation for disorderly conduct, but is it true that librarians are removing troublesome people by invoking “trespass”?

  3. And the irony of it all: if the McCain people would have actually let the lady express herself, we probably would not be talking about it right now. By all accounts, she was not being disruptive, but apparently, they find a little sign and an elderly lady threatening. So now, McCain ends up looking like a jerk because he messed with a librarian. People in this country may not give a crap about funding their libraries, but they do like the nice old lady who reads story time to their kids. You don’t mess with that lady: that’s up there with messing with a nun or something like that.

    In the end, her lady was exercising her right to have a dissenting view. Last I looked, we still had a Constitution in this country.

    Best, and keep on blogging.

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