Monday, October 4, 2010
Fuck the ACLU
What do I love most about the American Civil Liberties Union?
If local, state or federal authorities squelched my blog now over that provocative headline, and I called Bill Newman, Western Mass ACLU Director, he would instantly do everything in his considerable power to fend off the government intrusion on my First Amendment rights, all without sending me a bill.
Just as the national chapter did in the 1971 Supreme Court case of Cohan V California.
I first met Mr. Newman back in November, 1999 when I invited him to speak at a public rally on the Town Common I organized to protest the cancellation of 'West Side Story'. To date, the People's Republic of Amherst is the only entity in history to nix the award winning play.
And in his brief presentation he said, "The way to deal with bad speech is with good speech and more of it--not censorship." Although I'm sure he did not for a moment believe 'West Side Story' actually constituted "bad speech."
So yes, I despise Cowardly Anonymous Nitwits who march under white sheets, or an organization that advocates for sex between men and boys, or protesters who picket the funeral of American military personnel with homophobic signage--but that is the price we pay for our most cherished American ideal, the Freedom of Speech. A small price indeed.
So thank God (yes, another freedom I have) for the ACLU these past 90 years!
The Springfield Republican reports