BY WATCHING ADAMS STAFF – 12/7/15
As reported previously in McClure Bans Ledonne from Campus, Ledonne Responds, Watching Adams publisher and former faculty Danny Ledonne responded to Adams State University (ASU) banning him from campus without due process on October 14th.
Due process is commonly defined as “A fundamental, constitutional guarantee that all legal proceedings will be fair and that one will be given notice of the proceedings and an opportunity to be heard before the government acts to take away one’s life, liberty, or property.” In the United States, due process is commonly understood as an inalienable right codified by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments.
Beginning on October 23rd, Ledonne wrote to request that the “alleged behaviors” mentioned in President McClure’s letter banning him from campus be made known to him. Ledonne first wrote Assistant Attorney General Jessica Salazar, who informed him via phone on October 27th that the letter banning him from campus incorrectly identified her office for the appeal. Ledonne was re-directed to ASU interim Vice President Kurt Cary, to which Ledonne directed a series of letters requesting that the allegations be made known to him.
During this correspondence between October 27th and November 16th, Ledonne repeatedly requested to be notified of the law or policy he was accused of violating, objected to being denied due process prior to the imposition of the campus ban, objected to the appeals process being handled internally by the ASU administration, and contested the president’s judicial authority in banning him from a public university campus “indefinitely” without any formal charges being made against him in a court of law.
In response, Cary repeatedly expressed interest in meeting to collect information from Ledonne, made clear that the process was not a negotiation or mediation, repeatedly neglected to cite any law or policy violation, and never gave any substantive allegations of which Ledonne was accused. Instead, Cary included a list of anonymous quotes indicating that individuals felt “harassed,” “annoyed,” “alarmed” or “threatened” by Ledonne. While the response contained a variety of private thoughts and feelings expressed by anonymous individuals, no actual statements or actions by Ledonne himself were cited. Nothing approaching “direct and indirect threats against individuals and the campus as a whole” nor “terrorism” were identified, despite such claims being publicly stated by President McClure in campus-wide emails and media interviews.
In Ledonne’s final reply on the matter, he asserted that he requires additional information in order to meaningfully participate in an appeal; the substance of the allegations repeatedly requested were never supplied. He reiterated that such an appeal should not be handled by someone who reports directly to the authority who banned him from campus – an apparent conflict of interest. Ledonne also stated that he remained willing to meet on the original matter of his ongoing concerns regarding the 2015 full time faculty search during which he applied and later identified multiple procedural, factual, and technical errors in the hiring process. These issues remain unaddressed by ASU.
For more on the sequence of events that followed, see Negotiations with ASU Broke Down Before They Began. See below to read correspondence between Ledonne Cary in full.