New parade rules may be in place by the time the Aryan Nations resurrects its 100 Man Flag March in July.
The Coeur d’Alene City Council will consider new ordinances giving the city the ability to control the time, place and manner of gatherings, Mayor Steve Judy said.
That’s allowed under the Constitution as long as the controls have nothing to do with free speech issues, he said.
“We need to have reasonable controls,” Judy said. “If you are going to march, you can go here at this time, on this day, in this place.
“If you are going to hold a parade, you can go here.”
The community will be asked to give its input on the proposed rules, Judy said.
Judy issued a press release Thursday announcing the Aryan Nations parade will be allowed. “First Amendment rights dictate that the march must be allowed,” Judy said.
The Aryan Nations originally applied to hold a march in Coeur d’Alene April 18, commemorating Hitler’s birthday. Late Wednesday, leader Richard Butler said the event is being delayed until July during the Aryan World Congress.
The Aryans’ cancellation opened the door for the city to reconsider a parade permit request from the Jewish Defense League. The Los Angeles-based group wanted to march at the same time as the Aryans in an attempt to stop the Aryan event.
That permit was initially denied on the grounds that the city could not allow simultaneous parades.
Irv Rubin, Jewish Defense League national director, promised to come to Coeur d’Alene regardless of whether he received a permit. He could not be reached for comment Thursday.
The Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations, meanwhile, said it will go forward with at least part of its program scheduled for the week of April 13-19. That will include a human rights banquet featuring Gov. Phil Batt on April 13.
The task force also will continue to solicit pledges for cash donations based on the amount of time the Aryans march - whatever month it takes place - said Tony Stewart of the task force.
The Northwest Coalition Against Malicious Harassment says that fund-raising idea is part of the reason the Aryan Nations delayed its parade.
The Aryan Nations were making every effort to thwart the pledge drive, said Bill Wassmuth, “so it did catch their attention.” The coalition was told the Aryans believed state law gave them the right to a part of the proceeds, he said.
In Boise, human rights organizers are pushing forward today with a rally on the steps of the state capitol.