Add the Alameda County Bar Association to the growing list of groups treating the State Bar’s annual meeting like a pox-ridden village best to be avoided.
In an email issued yesterday, President Charles Bendes notified the association’s members that the ACBA will not be represented because the State Bar is holding its Sept. 10-13 meeting at San Diego’s Manchester Grand Hyatt. It’s not the accommodations that bother ACBA, but the fact that the hotel’s owner, Doug Manchester, donated $125,000 toward the passage of Proposition 8.
Sending a message … after the jump.
“We recognize that there are different points of view on this issue among our membership and on the board, including the view that we should take no position,” Bendes said. “However, in this instance, failing to take a position would, in fact, be a position.
“We believe that for the ACBA to attend the annual meeting at the Manchester Hyatt,” he added, “would convey the message that we are not deeply concerned with the civil rights issues created by Proposition 8.”
Bendes said members of the association are free to make their own decision, but that “no one will be attending the State Bar annual meeting on behalf of or as a representative of the ACBA.”
However, an ACBA delegation will take part in the Conference of Delegates of California Bar Associations, an independent group that debates political issues and legal rules during the State Bar meeting. That group moved its three-day session to the nearby Hilton San Diego Bayfront because of the Prop 8 issue.
The Beverly Hills Bar Association initiated the boycott in January and has since been joined by several other groups.
— Mike McKee