CLARK, NJ - Not long after a series of protest marches in town, the Clark Council issued a resolution, "opposing and condemning the hatred, violence, and rhetoric that constitutes racism, ethnic, religious or sexual orientation discrimination as incompatible with the Township’s values."
The resolution was moved and seconded by the entire council and all seven members voted in favor of adoption at the June 15, 2020 meeting.
Resolution 20-75 reads:
WHEREAS, enshrined in every fiber of our country from the Declaration of Independence to the present is the principal that every man, woman and child is endowed by their Creator with the inalienable right to the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness; and
WHEREAS, hatred, discrimination, and violence are incompatible with this promise, our national character, and the character and community of the Township of Clark; and
WHEREAS, this promise is far too often honored in the breach, when at times like the present we are confronted as both a nation and a community with the reality that too many Americans – our friends, neighbors, and colleagues – are confronted daily with hatred, discrimination and violence based on their race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation; and
WHEREAS, these unprovoked and intentional acts of hatred and violence represent a blatant disregard for the dignity and sanctity of human life; and
WHEREAS, the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I, Section 6 of the New Jersey Constitution guarantee citizens of this country and state the inalienable right to freely speak, write, debate, discuss and publish ideas, opinions, and sentiments on all subjects without government abridgement, interference or censorship; and
WHEREAS, the inalienable right to freedom of speech is not unlimited and carries with it the responsibility to exercise that right in ways compatible with the first principal of this Nation and this Community, that every man, woman and child, is entitled to be free from discrimination, hatred, and violence based on their race, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexuality; and
WHEREAS, the Township Council of the Township of Clark is aware of the pernicious effect social media platforms can play in facilitating discrimination, hate-speech, and racism, individually and in groups organized around divisive commentary; and
WHEREAS, the Township Council condemns, in the strongest terms, hatred, violence, and rhetoric that constitutes race, ethnic, religious, gender, or sexual orientation discrimination as incompatible with the values of the Clark community; and
WHEREAS, the Township of Clark’s social media policy for municipal employees prohibits, consistent with the First Amendment, municipal employee use of social media to engage in and support unlawful discrimination, based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexuality.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Township Council of the Township of Clark, in the County of Union, New Jersey that the Township Council opposes and condemns the hatred, violence, and rhetoric that constitutes racism, ethnic, religious, or sexual orientation discrimination as incompatible with the values of the Clark community; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Township Council disavows and condemns the use of the Township of Clark’s name, and any association with Clark, by individuals and social media groups, that target and harass individuals based on their race, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
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