By Patrick Larsen
Maddy Gross is, in some ways, your average Elon student. As a cinema student, she is regularly busy with class and extracurricular work, serving as head writer for the ETV sketch comedy show Elon Tonight.
Gross also spends her time working on and performing her stand-up comedy routine. She has been doing stand up for eight months now and has worked her way into the local community.
Gross’s next comedy show is this Saturday, February 25 and it is a big one. She has taken it upon herself to organize, host and perform in a show on Elon’s campus that will benefit the American Civil Liberties Union.
“I went to a benefit for Handicap International over fake break,” said Gross. “It was in a community center room, like not a real stage, but they had really really talented comedians and they raised something over $1,000. There weren’t even that many people because it was a small community center room and I was like ‘Okay, there’s people at Elon who have money, we can make this work!'”
“At first, I was thinking about doing it for Handicap International,” said Gross, “but then the Muslim ban happened and ever since that it was like ‘Alright, no question, here’s what we’re doing.'”
“I figured it’s one thing to support organizations that will speak out against it, but this is an organization, among other organizations too, that is doing something tangible,” said Gross.
“That’s the hardest thing to fight, I think, when you have the law on your side.”
Gross also mentioned that she like ACLU’s name recognition as a draw.
Gross paraphrased Martin Neimöller’s poem “First they came…” as another part of her inspiration and a reason why Elon students should attend.
“You definitely have to consider that,” said Gross. “You don’t know when it’s gonna be some part of your identity that’s on the line.”
The Elon Stands Up ACLU Benefit will be held at 8 p.m. in McKinnon Hall. Cover charge is $5. The line-up is Hannah Benson, Mikey Gibley, Spencer Hodges, Ryan O’Rourke and Maddy Gross.