NYC mayor, Yale pres on police checking on Muslims

February 22, 2012 - 12:05 AM

Yale President Richard Levin condemned the New York Police Department's monitoring of Muslim student associations in a letter on Monday:

"I am writing to state, in the strongest possible terms, that police surveillance based on religion, nationality, or peacefully expressed political opinions is antithetical to the values of Yale, the academic community, and the United States."

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Mayor Michael Bloomberg responded to Levin's comments during an exchange with reporters on Tuesday:

"We have to keep this country safe. This is a dangerous place. Make no mistake about it. It's very cute to go and blame everybody and say we should stay away from anything that smacks of intelligence gathering. The job of our law enforcement is to make sure that they prevent things. And you only do that by being proactive. You have to respect people's right to privacy. You have to obey the law. And I think police officers across this country, federal level, state level, city level do that.

"But having said all of that, you are not going to survive, you are not going to be able to be a journalist and write what you want to say, if the people who want to take away your freedoms succeed."