St. Paul, MINN - The Mall of America filed a request for a temporary restraining order in State Court against local Black Lives Matter organizers to block a protest planned at the Mall of America on December 23. The Mall’s restraining order proposes to block the demonstration and prohibit the protest organizers from “encouraging others to engage in any demonstration on MOA Premises." The far-reaching proposal seeks to limit what Black Lives Matter Organizers are permitted to say on social media.
The following statement can be attributed to Charles Samuelson, Executive Director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota.
The ACLU of Minnesota is deeply concerned about the restraining order that the Mall of America is seeking against Black Lives Matter organizers. It appears to be unconstitutionally overbroad and an improper prior restraint on speech. Mall of America, and other corporations, should not be able to dictate what private citizens write on their social media accounts. Organizing a peaceful protest on social media is protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and should not be restrained. The Mall of America is trying to intimidate free speech activities with this aggressive lawsuit. We hope the District Court will dismiss the restraining order quickly.
The ACLU-MN is not currently involved in the case but is closely monitoring it.