“Convicted” ACLU Attorney to Try Again


Fifth Estate # 36, August 15-31, 1967

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) expressed its regret and dismay July 25 that the conviction of Arthur Kinoy for disorderly conduct had been affirmed by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. The conviction of Prof. Kinoy stems from the attorney’s forcible ejection by the House Un-American Activities Committee during its probe in August, 1966, of anti-Vietnam War groups.

The Union’s statement, issued immediately after the opinion came down, pledged full support to a further appeal because of “the vital civil liberties principles involved.”

Kinoy is the Rutgers University Law Professor who, while serving as an ACLU cooperating attorney, was thrown out of the stormy HUAC hearing on August 17, 1966, after protesting a witness’s maligning of his client and asking for the right of cross examination. He was found guilty on August 19 of disorderly conduct by Judge Greene who imposed a $50 fine.

Speaking for the Union, John de J. Pemberton, Jr., its executive director, said, “It is not true, as some reports have suggested, that Mr. Kinoy’s conduct in the HUAC hearings paralleled the disorderly conduct of some of the spectators—or of the Committee itself. In the face of the Committee’s riding roughshod over the rights of his client and over his own attempt to assert those rights, Mr. Kinoy was cautiously seeking—as a lawyer’s duty requires him—to preserve a record from which those rights could be vindicated in a later judicial proceeding.”