William Moses Kunstler

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Kunstler, William Moses,

1919–95, American lawyer, b. New York City, grad. Yale (1941), Columbia law school (1948). Flamboyant and often brilliant, Kunstler defended the unpopular and unfailingly supported left-wing causes and clients. He represented his first controversial case in the 1950s, and by the 1960s was working with the American Civil Liberties UnionAmerican Civil Liberties Union
(ACLU), nonpartisan organization devoted to the preservation and extension of the basic rights set forth in the U.S. Constitution. Founded (1920) by such prominent figures as Jane Addams, Helen Keller, Judah Magnus, and Norman Thomas, the ACLU grew
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 and representing Martin Luther KingKing, Martin Luther, Jr.,
1929–68, American clergyman and civil-rights leader, b. Atlanta, Ga., grad. Morehouse College (B.A., 1948), Crozer Theological Seminary (B.D., 1951), Boston Univ. (Ph.D., 1955).
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 and other civil rights leaders. His most famous case was the Chicago Seven, whom he defended against charges of inciting a riot at the 1968 Democratic convention. Other cases included his defense of the American Indian Movement at Wounded KneeWounded Knee,
creek, rising in SW S.Dak. and flowing NW to the White River; site of the last major battle of the Indian wars. After the death of Sitting Bull, a band of Sioux, led by Big Foot, fled into the badlands, where they were captured by the 7th Cavalry on Dec.
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 (1974), of prisoners in the Attica riots (1975), of drug dealer Larry Davis (1986), of gangster John Gotti (1992), and of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman and other accused terrorists in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. He wrote The Case for Courage (1962), Trials and Tribulations (1985), The Emerging Police State (2004), and other books.


See his My Life as a Radical Lawyer (1994); biography by D. J. Langum (1999); E. and S. Kunstler, dir., William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe (documentary, 2009).

References in periodicals archive ?
One of the most helpful accounts of the trial is that of crusading attorney William Kunstler, in Politics on Trial: Five Famous Trials of the Twentieth Century.
By the end of the month, the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Education Association had arranged to pay Scott's legal and living expenses, as well as engaging famous attorney William Kunstler to represent him.
civil rights movement lawyers--Professor Arthur Kinoy, William Kunstler,
Her husband, Joel, is an aging, high-profile Jewish radical lawyer reminiscent of William Kunstler or Leonard Boudin, the sun around whom the family orbits.
The defense team, led by renowned attorney William Kunstler, contended that Davis had been recruited into dealing drugs by crooked cops and the real object of the raid was to silence him by murder.
Mark Ruffalo as Rubin, Liev Schreiber as their and five other defendants' co- counsel William Kunstler (surviving defense attorney Leonard Weinglass provides his own voice), Nick Nolte as prosecutor Thomas Foran and the recently deceased Roy Scheider as the elderly, civil-liberties-torturing Judge Julius Hoffman.
The same kind that were attracted to his class could be found in mine: future public interest lawyers, poverty lawyers, human rights lawyers, and, in good years, a future Jack Olender or William Kunstler.
Launched by Abbie Hoffman, William Kunstler, Leonard Weinglass, and a bevy of other hard-core revolutionaries, R&R is a militant Marxist/Maoist group.
While it is refreshingly free of the dime-store psychoanalysis that appears in many modern biographies, the book thoughtfully explores the complexities of William Kunstler the man.
Such important figures as Maurice Eisendrath, Jack Greenberg, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Stanley Levinson, Allard Lowenstein, William Kunstler, and Harry Wachtel are featured in Shared Dreams, but Schneier also sheds light on lesser-known figures like King's literary agent, the German-Jewish refugee Joan Daves, and Rabbi Israel Dressner.
As the famed left-wing lawyer William Kunstler explained, "It makes no difference anymore whether the attack on Tawana really happened.
Attorney Leonard Weinglass stumbled onto fame when he found himself side-by-side with William Kunstler representing defendants in the Chicago Eight trial in 1969.