Rare are those occasions when this writer is aligned with the position of the ACLU. The recent events in Charlottesville and the inflamed passions of the mob however provided a test of the founding principles of this organization and they are to be commended for upholding them without equivocation.
Fortunately, the ACLU understands that the First Amendment is so revered in this country because it is absolute: there cannot be freedom of speech for some but not for others. The fact that many find the principles of neo-Nazism repugnant is not a reason to deny this group the right to freely assemble. Unlike many dimwits who inhabit the fringes of the Democratic Party, the ACLU understands that if the First Amendment is to have any meaning, those who cherish freedom of speech must stand up for the right of an organization to exercise its First Amendment rights; the more unpopular the organization or cause, the more steadfast our resolve should be to protect their right to free speech.
In the late 70’s the American Nazi Party, no more popular then than it is today, held a rally in Skokie, Illinois. Many argued that the organization should not be allowed to march. The ACLU supported the American Nazi Party’s right to march then and they supported the right of the White Nationalist to march in Charlottesville.
Charlottesville City Manager, Maurice Jones, tried to halt the planned assembly by refusing to issue a permit for the gathering in the park where the statue of General Robert E. Lee was situated. Here is the response of the ACLU:
“As organizations committed to protecting constitutional and civil rights, we demand that the city withdraw its letter to Jason Kessler of August 7, 2017, revoking and otherwise rescinding the permit for a demonstration in Emancipation Park on August 12, 2017, and provide assurances that the city will allow the ‘Unite the Right’ demonstration as previously planned and approved by operation of law.”
The ACLU took enormous flak from liberals, who lost their collective minds at the position of the organization. I believe that the ACLU deserves our respect and thanks for remaining true to their principles and to the First Amendment and for bucking the trend of so many on the Left who believe, without reflection, that speech some find “offensive” should be outlawed.