1999 October 8

“Giuliani Time”: NYCLU Sues NYC Mayor Over Brooklyn Museum Censorship


The New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) on this day filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani for censoring the Brooklyn Museum over a controversial art exhibit. In response to the exhibit “Sensation,” a collection of works by young British artists, Mayor Giuliani denounced it as “sick stuff;” he attempted to withdraw the museum’s funding and also to cancel its lease with the city. One artwork in particular featured a black Virgin Mary and included elephant dung. The Creative Coalition that brought the suit included the NYCLU, the ACLU, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and the National Coalition Against Censorship.

The case was one of about twenty in which the NYCLU and other groups sued Mayor Giuliani during his term in office for blatant violations of the First Amendment. The phrase “Giuliani Time” was a satirical reference to a slogan used by New York City police officers who chanted it at a demonstration to make the point that Mayor Giuliani supported them against their critics, unlike the previous mayor, David Dinkins.

Learn more about Giuliani vs. the First Amendmenthttp://www.nyclu.org/news/nyclu-v-giuliani-first-amendment-cases

Learn more at the NYCLU: http://www.nyclu.org/

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