Free speech absolutism has always been a tactical position for the ACLU.
As its co-founder put it, ” I champion civil liberty as the best of the non-violent means of building the power on which workers rule must be based. If I aid the reactionaries to get free speech now and then, if I go outside the class struggle to fight against censorship, it is only because those liberties help to create a more hospitable atmosphere for working class liberties. The class struggle is the central conflict of the world; all others are incidental.”
“When that power of the working class is once achieved, as it has been only in the Soviet Union, I am for maintaining it by any means whatever. Dictatorship is the obvious means in a world of enemies at home and abroad… I saw in the Soviet Union many opponents of the regime. I visited a dozen prisons — the political sections among them. I saw considerable of the work of the OGPU. I heard a good many stories of severity, even of brutality, and many of them from the victims. While I sympathized with personal distress I just could not bring myself to get excited over the suppression of opposition…”
So the ACLU, like the rest of the left, is just taking off the mask. And yet it’s significant that the leftist organization most associated with defending the First Amendment, which used to defend the freedom of expression of Neo-Nazis, is jettisoning all that.
In secretive guidelines that were revealed this week in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece by former ACLU board member Wendy Kaminer, the liberal organization initially claimed it wanted to advance “neutral principles” that protect speech “irrespective of the political speaker’s particular political views.”
The memo, which was marked “confidential attorney client work product,” went on to outline numerous “considerations” that sharply qualified the ACLU’s supposedly neutral commitment to free speech.
And the leaked document said the organization needed to consider the effect of speech on “marginalized communities” and “the extent to which the speech may assist in advancing the goals of white supremacists or others whose views are contrary to our values.”
Specifically… from the memo….
Read the full story from Front Page Mag
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