NEW YORK (Feb. 24)
Plans to bar the New York City Board of Education from allowing the neo-Nazi National Renaissance Party to use a public school auditorium for a meeting were being pondered today by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith.
An ADL spokesman, denouncing the Board’s decision again, said the agency’s attorneys were deciding on whether to appeal to New York State Education Commissioner James E. Allen or to seek a court injunction against the Board. The tiny Nazi party, which has a record of disseminating anti-Semitic and anti-Negro propaganda, has received permission to meet in a school building here on March 18.
The spokesman said it was “outrageous” that a school building should be “misused” by a Nazi group which “is neither a political organization nor serves any worthwhile civic or social function” and therefore has “no valid claim to use the tax-supported public schools to disseminate its poison.”
Rep. Leonard Farbstein, New York Democrat, joined in the protest today with an appeal to the Board to reconsider its ruling. In a letter to the Board, he said that meetings of the neo-Nazis “must inevitably lead to dissension and promote disorders in the community.”
Rep. Farbstein noted in his letter that the Board had reversed an earlier refusal on grounds that it was forced to do so by an opinion from New York City Corporation Counsel J. Lee Rankin that the Nazis were a political party which had a right to meet and be heard in public school buildings. He noted, however, that N.Y. State Attorney General Louis Lefkowitz had ruled that withholding of such permission “to such a neo-Nazi, Fascistic group” was “perfectly valid” and would be upheld “by our courts.”