The ACLU 50-State Survey
My wife and I receive bulk-mail political fundraising pitches disguised as "surveys" all the time -- but not ordinarily from the American Civil Liberties Union, which I remember as supposedly being a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to protecting our liberties as enshrined in the Bill of Rights. For example, the ACLU's recent defense of the free-speech rights of the Nazis in Charlottesville, Virginia, no matter how terribly offensive those speeches would be, is how I remember the ACLU from the "old days."
However, a 4-page survey/fundraising ACLU mailer I recently received reads as if it was designed by a Social Justice Warrior. The first page is pretty innocuous, primarily asking for my opinion of the strength of civil rights in Massachusetts in relation to other states. I don't really have any facts or statistics to make such a judgment, but my feeling is that, because I live in a "blue" state, where nanny government harasses us with nitpicking regulations at both state and city levels, I would probably feel more free if I lived in a "red", less highly-regulated state.
But SJW-itis pops up very soon, in Question #3: "…how concerned are you that the efforts by President Trump… to undermine our civil liberties…". Proof, please; I was not aware that Trump is destroying my civil liberties; indeed, I think the opposite is true. At any rate, this contentious assertion should not be offered up as if it were an incontrovertible fact.
The Social Justice Warrior really gets to work on page 2 of the survey:.In #1, "Baseless claims about voter fraud…". Complaints of voter fraud are not "baseless"; voter fraud is hard to prove, and has been proven on a small scale. Whether or not voter fraud is more widespread is currently the subject of research projects and a Congressional investigation; we shall see.
"…a new wave of voter suppression laws…" I interpret as SJW-coded language for voter ID laws that, if implemented, would go a long way to guaranteeing the civil right of citizens who vote not having their votes countermanded by the illegal votes of non-citizens.
Item #2 is highly emotional SJW language in opposition to enforcing existing immigration law. I thought the ACLU favored a nation of laws, not a nation of people doing as they please in spite of the law? I guess not. (Note to ACLU: Foreigners in the U.S. have rights, but not the extensive protections that citizens do.)
Item #3 is a political issue (taxpayer funding of abortions) having nothing to do with civil rights. From the wording of items #3 and #5, it is clear the ACLU organization is very pro-abortion. I guess there's no room in the ACLU for you, you deplorable, if you think the right of mothers to murder their unborn babies is absolute rather than inhumane and deserving of being regulated. According to #5, you are an "Emboldened extremist."
Item #4 pertains exclusively to POTUS: "Donald Trump abusing power and undermining the rule of law…". Again, I ask: proof please? What, exactly, does the SJW have to offer for evidence? Exhibiting a severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome is not proof.
In #6, "…the Muslim ban…" No such thing. The original (revised) travel ban for certain terrorist-infested nations, identified by the Obama administration, which are primarily Muslim was blocked by lower courts (to which Trump acceded -- so much for being a fascist!), then allowed to proceed by the U.S. Supreme Court. That travel ban expired and has been replaced by new restrictions on immigration from countries, both Muslim and non-Muslim, with substandard vetting. The ACLU is in favor of letting just anybody into the country?
On the third page, about defending freedom, I'm definitely in favor of that, but why do I get the feeling the SJW who wrote this survey would favor freedoms tied to identity politics? Perhaps it's because of #2, "…our fast-growing base of activists and supporters to mobilize people…" Community organizers! We just had one of those as our president. How well did that work out for you? In #3, …block efforts in… …advancing racial profiling…" -- does that mean the ACLU will target unconstitutional reverse discrimination (blandly called "affirmative action") against people trying to get into college or seeking employment? Don't I wish!
On page 4 -- here it comes -- is the money pitch: "Yes, with President Trump in the White House and extremists pushing their anti-liberties agenda…" does not, I think, refer to the so-called Antifa fascists who use violence to shut down the free-speech rights of conservative speakers, nor to the violence of Black Lives Matter terrorists.
If I lived in a "red" state, do you think the ACLU would be mailing me a survey and membership solicitation on how the ACLU is fighting alongside Trump to protect our freedom of speech, religious freedoms, and the right to bear arms? Unlikely.
In the fine print at the bottom of the 4th page it states that Contributions to the ACLU are not tax deductible for charitable purposes. From the hard-left dogma incorporated into this survey, I can see why -- any money sent to the ACLU will primarily support social-justice warfare, which is decidedly not a charitable activity.
Nick Chase is a retired but still very active writer, editor, and webmaster, and records classical music concerts for radio broadcast. You can read more of his work on the American Thinker website and at contrariansview.org.