UH: APEC Sign Comes Down Thursday

Published On: Oct 31 2011 09:57:42 PM HST   Updated On: Nov 01 2011 04:55:11 AM HST

Hawaii has one of the toughest anti-billboard laws in the country.

So a question posed about the legality of the sign on the lawn of Bachman Hall at the University of Hawaii at Manoa wasn?t unreasonable.

A protest over the politics of APEC and a small welcome sign that was erected drew enough interest to spur phone calls between various entities to clarify the issue.

A small band of protestors expressed their displeasure about the APEC sign on the lawn in front of Bachman Hall by marching across campus last week.

They collected about 200 signatures on a petition demanding its removal.

They disagree with the politics of APEC. They said it is bad for the world, while organizers said it is good for the economy.

But UH officials weren't about to take the sign down because of that.

UH spokeswoman Diane Chang told KITV Monday that the city considers the sign permissible as a special events sign, but under the law it has to be down in seven days.

Those who took part in the protest were elated at the news.

The sign was erected more than a month ago, and protestors said it was like it had become a fixture on the lawn.

?This is not the only sign welcoming APEC onto campus there are other signs but it is wonderful that the most public sign here is going to be coming down,? said Lynn Mayekawa.

UH Art professor Gaye Chan says there are three other signs on campus that she knows of.

"Two are in the library, and one is across the East West Center. They are smaller. This is the most obscene out of the bunch, hopefully they will take those down too," Chan said.

Her view of APEC remains the same.

"The long term damage is enviromental, human rights not just for us, but the world over. There is going to be worse air, global warming. There is serious irreparable damage that APEC does all over the world,"said Chan.

Chang said the sign would be replaced with one promoting the musical production, ?Oklahoma,? which is playing at Kennedy Theater.

It is not known if the University plans to erect another sign, once the banner advertising the theater production comes down.


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