Lavine Statement On NYPD And Columbia University In Harlem

May 1, 2024

Assemblymember Charles Lavine (D-North Shore) issued the following in response to the New York City Police Department and Harlem’s Columbia University administration’s response.

This is a response to the ongoing violent protests over the Israel-Gaza war:

I am impressed with the professionalism of the NYPD in addressing the violent unrest that took place on Columbia University’s campus. The administration made the correct decision in asking for assistance to clear the occupied Hamilton Hall and the encampment on the school’s lawn. The officers involved used an appropriate level of force. Those involved will now need to deal with the legal consequences of their ill-fated decision to cross the line from protected free speech to criminal activity. Meanwhile the decision to move in, and then for it to be carried out with appropriate restraint, achieved the goal of restoring freedom to the campus. 

In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence.”

Assemblymember Charles Lavine represents New York’s 13th Assembly District in Nassau County. He presently serves as Chair of the Judiciary Committee and is a member of the Committees on Codes, Ethics and Guidance, Insurance and Rules. Lavine previously served as Chair of the Election Law Committee, Chair of the Committee on Ethics and Guidance, co-Chair of the New York State Legislative Ethics Commission, and as Chair of the bipartisan Taskforce that produced the Assembly Speaker’s Policy on Sexual Harassment, Retaliation and Discrimination. Lavine is also President of the New York Chapter of the National Association of Jewish Legislators and a member of its National Board of Directors.

Photo credit: HWM.

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