November 1, 2017 at 8:45 pm

ACLU Executive Director on the Fight Against Voter Suppression, Nov. 14

Executive Director of the ACLU of Ohio J. Bennett Guess discusses the ACLU’s efforts in working to protect and expand Americans’ freedom to vote in “Free The Vote: The Fight Against Voter Suppression,” on Tuesday, Nov. 14, at 7 p.m. in the Athena Cinema.

In addition, The CLJC will host an informal discussion with Bennett Guess in the Center for Law, Justice & Culture in Bentley 001 from 12:00-1:30 p.m. with pizza.

ACLU of Ohio Executive Director J. Bennett Guess

ACLU of Ohio Executive Director J. Bennett Guess

Guess became Executive Director of the ACLU of Ohio on July 1, 2017. He also serves on the National LGBTQ Task Force in Washington D.C., and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland. Prior to his role at the ACLU, Guess served as a progressive pastor with the United Church of Christ for 17 years. During that time, his congregation in Kentucky founded an on-site Planned Parenthood and Matthew 25 AIDS Services. Guess played an instrumental role in UCC v. Cooper, which helped to bring marriage equality to North Carolina.

Guess graduated from the University of Kentucky with a B.A. in journalism and completed a master’s in public administration at Murray State University, a Master of Divinity at Vanderbilt University, and a Doctor of Ministry at Chicago Theological Seminary.

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that seeks to protect civil liberties through the judicial system, as well as lobbying to legislative branches.  The ACLU has been involved in many of the nation’s landmark constitutional court cases, including the Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, which ended racial segregation in schools and Obergefell v. Hodges, which made marriage equality the law of the land.

“We are so excited and honored to have the Executive Director of the ACLU of Ohio on campus,” said Gabrielle Tharp, a junior and the events manager for the Ohio University ACLU student group that was reactivated in Spring 2017. “The right to vote is one of the major foundations that our democracy rests on, and it will be exciting to hear what he has to say about voter suppression. Everybody has the right to vote, but that is not the reality for many people. There are a lot of ways that the right to vote can be suppressed.”

The event is co-sponsored by the Center for Law, Justice & Culture, Making & Breaking the Law theme, the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio University, and Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity.

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