A St. Louis man claims Kansas City, Kansas, Community College violated his First Amendment rights by denying his “vegetarian outreach efforts.”
Richard Hershey distributes information regarding animal suffering and the benefits of a plant-based diet for a nonprofit organization. In the complaint, Hershey said KCKCC prevented him from returning to campus.
This isn’t the first time this kind of thing has happened to Hershey. KSDK, the NBC station in St. Louis, interviewed Hershey in 2012 after he was punched and kicked off a college campus there.
Hershey said he visited KCKCC in 2013 and requested to again 2015 but was denied.
While the video he shows may upset some, Hershey said that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a right to show it. “Yes, the video is upsetting to some of the viewers that watch it as it depicts scenes of animal cruelty and animal suffering in the animal agri-business.”
His attorney, Robert Herman, said this is a violation of his First Amendment rights. “The college, being a public entity, has no right to suppress Mr. Hershey’s speech on the basis of the content of his speech or any other reason.”
KCKCC couldn’t be reached for comment.
Hershey is asking to return to the campus to continue his efforts and is seeking damages for lost income.
Shannon Halligan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.