BGSU legal services on the ball

Staff Editorial and Staff Editorial

When 2005 rolls around, Rodney Fleming and the University’s Student Legal Services will know whether a fight for your rights was a success.

Fleming is lead counsel at SLS and is heading the battle against the Nuisance Party Ordinace. Over 50 residents of Bowling Green have received citations, including the 25 students Fleming is respresenting. But he is not just representing them. He is fighting the ordinance all together.

SLS is going beyond its call of duty to challenge BG’s implementation of a law that may violate citizen’s First Amendment right of assembly.

Nusiance party ordinances are popping up around the country and some are being challenged.

Looking around the region, we see a similar situation at Ohio U. In Athens, the Center for Student Advocacy is standing up for the rights of students on grounds similar to those used by the BGSU SLS.

The CSA in Athens is a student-funded nonprofit agency just like the SLS here. The SLS provides legal consultation, information and representation for students — all for $5 a semester.

Apparently, they’ll also take on their city when it comes to the constitutionality of laws aimed at the student population, on the premise that their law is too hard to prosecute.

This is an ordinance that could affect any student who lives off campus and wants to throw a get together.

Within this ordinance a party host can get it trouble easily for situations that are beyond his or her control.

Part of college is the social aspect. This ordinance discourages any get-together because it does not clearly define what a “nuisance party” is , therefore affects more people than we imagine was originally intended.

Students who throw parties that involve illegal actions and disrupt the city should expect the possibilty that they will get in trouble with the law. But not everything is within their control.

Because of Fleming and SLS we have a professional on our side who will fight for our rights.

We hope the case that is decided over break will recognize the problems with this ordiance and rule it unconstitutional.