https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/m ... ottesville
That last quote scares the shit out of me.The flare-up after Charlottesville was by no means the first such disagreement among ACLU staff. In 2008, shortly after the election, some objected when the organisation spoke out for the speech rights of four students who spray-painted “Hang Obama by a Noose” and “Let’s shoot that nigger in the head” at North Carolina State university. A more recent source of tension has been over the ACLU’s defence of the Washington Redskins football team’s right to retain its name, which many staff members consider so offensive they refuse to utter it. “There’s a lot of discontent, especially among staff of colour, across the country,” an ACLU lawyer in California told me.
Over the past two decades, the ACLU has expanded significantly, hiring younger and more diverse staff. “By doing that, they have ushered in a different way of thinking about the work,” Vince Warren, who was a senior staff attorney at the ACLU from 1999 to 2006, told me. The national office employs roughly 400 people, 40% of whom are people of colour. “We’re moving toward an honest examination of the limits of the first amendment and its place in the uneven structure of our society,” the ACLU lawyer in California said.
The other thing that terrifies me is how this is framed as a clash between diversity and free speech. Diversity is a religious matter for many people, even some younger Gen X types. I've seen the looks that certain people get on their faces when they are photographed in a diverse group. I've seen the way some people confess to growing up in places less diverse than SoCal. There's...there's something going on. We're in a religious moment, and while I've always grumbled about the excesses to which it's taken in academia, and the cynical ways that other organizations use it for PR, I suppose that one could dismiss these as isolated things, not reflective of anything bigger.
But if the ACLU's staff are now Woke, and they see Diversity and Inclusion as being in tension with free speech? Honestly, the First Amendment is now in the same boat as Piss Christ or pictures of Mohammed.