Police Investigate Alleged Threat To Affirmative Action Foe

Santiago Esparza, Detroit News, June 14, 2006

DETROIT—-An official with the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, which is pushing for an end to race-based affirmative action policies, has accused a member of an opposition group of threatening her with a knife.

MCRI Executive Director Jennifer Gratz on Tuesday filed a report with the Detroit Police accusing Luke Massie, national chairman of the activist group By Any Means Necessary, of displaying the knife during a confrontation. She said the incident happened Monday morning outside of a Michigan Civil Rights Commission meeting in the State building on West Grand Boulevard.

Massie contends it didn’t happen at all.

“I won’t be intimidated,” Gratz said today. “It was a clear attempt to threaten and intimidate.”

The initial police report, which has been assigned to an investigator, says Gratz told officers Massie had a knife in his right pants pocket and toyed with it, said Detroit Police Sgt. Omar Feliciano.

Gratz said Massie pulled the knife halfway out of his pants but did not draw its blade.

Gratz has been a lightening rod for controversy after suing the University of Michigan for denying her admission in 1995. She claimed reverse discrimination, because she is white and the university at that time was giving priority to minority students for admission.

In 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the system. Gratz then helped to launch an effort to amend the state constitution to bar municipalities, schools and other public from using preferences based on ethnicity and gender.

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