Administrators yesterday refuted student claims that the University's Open Expression guidelines were suspended during former President Ronald Reagan's speech in May, saying that they were simply unable to enforce the policies. College senior Sloan Wiesen claimed at Tuesday's UA meeting that when he was ejected by an unidentified security guard for carrying a placard during the speech, Open Expression Committee Vice Chairperson Sol Goodgal told students that the guidelines were not in effect. And the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly unanimously passed a resolution yesterday calling for a formal apology for the suspension, after graduate student Jeff Abrahamson, who was involved in the same incident, raised the issue. But Microbiology Professor Goodgal, who was acting as Open Expression Chairperson in the absence of Regional Planning Professor William Grigsby, denied last night that he had ever said the guidelines had been lifted for the Peak Week. "I simply said that since there was no request for [Open Expression] monitors, it was not our responsibility," he said. "We don't serve a police function." And Vice Provost for University Life Kim Morrisson said last night that the guidelines were in effect during the speech, but Open Expression monitors who included Senior Vice President Marna Whittington and Assiatant VPUL George Koval had no jurisdiction over federal and city law enforcement agents. "[The law enforcement officials'] vision of open expression and their vision of their police duties are not always the same," Morrisson said. Several students who protested at Reagan's speech reported being evicted from the Philadelphia Civic Center by Secret Service agents, the Philadelphia Police's Dignitary Protection unit and Spectaguard security guards. Assistant to the President William Epstein said that Open Expression monitors at the speech attempted to get many of the students who had been evicted from the event back in to hear the address. Another student, 1990 College graduate Daniel Zigmond, was forced to plead guilty in August to charges of obstructing Civic Center Boulevard during the speech. Zigmond claimed that he was not involved in the protest, but was forced to plead guilty because he was leaving for Thailand the next week. Ed Miller contributed to this story.Comments powered by Disqus
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