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2bikemike
10-19-2004, 10:36 AM
NEW YORK - The American Civil Liberties Union has turned down $1.15 million in funding from the Ford and Rockefeller foundations, saying new anti-terrorism restrictions demanded by the institutions make it unable to accept their funds.


In a statement on the organization’s Web site, ACLU executive director Anthony Romero said ambiguous language in the grants could foster impediments to free speech and includes terms like “bigotry” whose meanings are too vague to support in any funding agreements.

The ACLU’s move is an apparent reaction to new restrictive language by both foundations. The Ford Foundation now bars recipients of its funds from engaging in any activity that “promotes violence, terrorism, bigotry, or the destruction of any state.”

The Rockefeller Foundation’s provisions state that recipients of its funds may not “directly or indirectly engage in, promote, or support other organizations or individuals who engage in or promote terrorist activity.”

Romero said such vague grant language “could have a chilling effect” on civil liberties. “The ACLU cannot effectively defend the rights of all Americans if we do not stand up for those same rights ourselves,” he said.

In a statement, the president of the Ford Foundation, Susan Berresford, sought to minimize the dispute.

“We accept and respect that we have a different mission from the ACLU, even while we share the same basic values,” she wrote. “We are proud to support the ACLU’s defense of free speech. We do not, however, believe that a private donor like Ford should support all speech itself (such as speech that promotes bigotry or violence).”



So the ACLU thinks its a right to promote terrorist activity?

KCWolfman
10-19-2004, 12:29 PM
Well, they aren't promoting terrorist activity, per se.

However, they certainly aren't representing "Everyone" as they profess to do when they make such poor decisions.

go bowe
10-19-2004, 02:38 PM
Well, they aren't promoting terrorist activity, per se.

However, they certainly aren't representing "Everyone" as they profess to do when they make such poor decisions.do they really say that they represent "everyone"?

or that they seek to protect civil liberties, which benefit everyone?

the aclu has made some poor choices (which any organization with humans running it is likely to do, particularly an "idealistic" organization)...

but protecting civil liberties, including those liberties that aren't always so popular (and/or "clients" who are sometimes a little unsavory) is an important goal...

and i don't see anybody else trying to do it...

so, with some reservations, i generally support the aclu's activities...

in keeping with its general opposition to restrictions on the right of free speech, it makes sense that the aclu would have a problem with a restriction regarding "bigotry", since it's almost impossible to know just exactly what would be considered "bigotry"...

and, with such a restriction, the decision as to what part of free speech should not be protected would then be controlled by the foundation, a private entity...

limits to our constitutional freedoms should never be determined by a private entity but by the law, that's where that "rule of law" thing comes in...

with regard to the rockefeller grant, i suppose the same argument could be made that the term terrorism is somewhat vague like bigotry (although much less so, imo)...

and that speech regarding political matters (including speech regarding issues and/or particular organizations in the me) which is constitutionally protected might be restricted based on what the foundation defines as terrorist (one man's terrorist is meme's freedom fighter, after all)...

there is a distinction between advocating/"promoting" political points of view involving controversial subjects and actually supporting terrorism...

one is constitutionally protected and the other is not...

Cochise
10-19-2004, 02:41 PM
Can't use your money to support terrorists? Well, I guess we don't know what we'd do with it then.... :hmmm: ;)