Wednesday, September 27

American Civil Liberties Union Members Say Leaders Flirt with Fascism

Bush 43 post-9/11's ardent embrace of fascism has cast a dark shadow on American civil liberties. It's even causing in-house feuding among national leaders and longtime members of the American Civil Liberties Union, the nation's principal defender of a Bill of Rights on life support.

A faction called Save the ACLU recently posted on its new website a mission statement claiming the organization has been "compromised by its repeated failures to practice what it preaches." The group also claims ACLU leaders are suppressing free speech in the organization along with members' right to criticism leaders and the organization.

Save the ACLU's homepage in part reads:

We come together now, reluctantly but resolutely, not to injure the ACLU but to restore its integrity, and its consistency of principle and remedy its failure to apply to itself core civil liberties principles that it insists everyone else observe. The failure to practice what we preach– until publicly embarrassed– has already done grievous injury to the ACLU and ultimately threatens its historic mission.

.... The ACLU now stands exposed, and widely ridiculed, for repeatedly acting in contempt of its own core principles, and for chilling and even attempting to prohibit dissent within its own ranks.

Over the past three years, these breaches of principle include the ACLU’s approval of grant agreements that restrict speech and associational rights; efforts by management to impose gag rules on staff and to subject staff to email surveillance; a proposal to bar ACLU board members from publicly criticizing the ACLU; and informal campaigns to purge the ACLU of its internal critics.

A friend well acquainted with Amnesty International says that organization also is experiencing curiously similar in-house bickering. As in the 9/11 Truth Movement, have the neo-cons infiltrated these two stalwart organization to "divide and conquer," to neutralize their effectiveness to challenge fascists affronts to civil liberties and human rights?

During these perilous times, we hope the ACLU (and AI) can rectify their internal problems and emerge unified to challenge a White House that is waging a putative all-out-war on the cultural legacy of humanitarian principles underlying the European Renaissance, the US Constitution, reason and science.

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