Task Force buries Constitution as part of May 4 commemoration

Tyrel Linkhorn

A copy of the U. S. Constitution was laid to rest shortly after 8 p.m. yesterday by the May 4 Task Force.

Approximately 25 people gathered on Blanket Hill behind Taylor Hall to witness the ceremonial burial of the document in a small hole directly behind the Victory Bell.

The first burial took place on May 1, 1970, during campus protests, which led to the shootings on May 4.

As the clock struck 8 p.m., the bell was rung eight times and ground was broken. A copy of the document then was rolled and placed in the hole.

The burial was not in protest of the document itself, but rather to signify that what it stands for is dead, said Kevin Heade, Task Force president and senior political science and education major.

“We do not harbor any malice toward the document,” he said in a speech before the small crowd.

Heade said the burial marked the 36th anniversary of the first burial, which was in protest of the escalating Vietnam conflict and the bombing of Cambodia. Other burials took place with the passage of the PATRIOT Act and the beginning of the first Iraq War.

Heade compared the incident in Cambodia to what could possibly happen in the future in Iran, with Bush threatening the possible use of nuclear weapons.

Fellow May 4 Task Force member John Brad Deane, senior political science major, followed Heade’s speech with a short speech of his own, citing “three illegal wars and two fake elections,” as part of the death of the Constitution.

“We still have an opportunity to take a stance now,” he said.

The bell rang one final time to signal the end of the ceremony.

After the speeches were over, Amanda John, senior integrated science major and member of both the May 4 Task Force and the Kent State Anti-War Committee, said she thought the message was “very powerful.”

“We’re not the ones doing the killing,” she said. “We’re just acknowledging the fact.”

Heade said in an interview after the speech that the turnout was larger than expected, and the event went well.

“It was small, quick and symbolic,” he said.

Contact news correspondent Tyrel Linkhorn at [email protected].