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Re: [prezveepsenator] A.C.L.U. Warned on Plan to Limit Members' Speech

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  • Randal M. Brown
    Its funny this post came up, because a friend and me were talking about the ACLU last night. While I will admit the idea of the organization is good, I do
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 18, 2006
      Its funny this post came up, because a friend and me were talking about the ACLU last night.  While I will admit the idea of the organization is good, I do feel that they very often ought to keep their mouth's shut.  Not all the time, just some of the time.  But that would probably go with everybody else too.  I think that the "Freedom of Speech" in the Constitution is one of the most abused and misunderstood parts of the Constitution. 
       
      Well anyway, that is my two cents.
       
      Randal


      Greg Cannon <gregcannon1@...> wrote:
      http://www.nytimes. com/2006/ 06/19/us/ 19aclu.html? hp&ex=1150689600 &en=2f45d2d75e93 68f5&ei=5094& partner=homepage

      A.C.L.U. Warned on Plan to Limit Members' Speech
      By STEPHANIE STROM
      Published: June 19, 2006

      A lawyer in the New York state attorney general's
      office informally warned the American Civil Liberties
      Union that his office had concerns about proposed
      standards that would limit the group's board members
      from speaking publicly about policies and internal
      operations, according to three board members.

      The executive committee of the A.C.L.U. board was told
      about the warning on Friday, the day before the board
      met in New York for its quarterly meeting. Board
      members, who discussed the proposals on Saturday but
      took no action, had no knowledge of the warning and
      the meeting ended on Sunday without the executive
      committee revealing it.

      "What if we had voted to approve the proposals?" said
      Wendy Kaminer, a board member who has criticized the
      proposals and other actions taken by the board and the
      A.C.L.U. leadership over the last couple of years. "We
      had a need and a right to know that if we passed them,
      we might get into trouble with the attorney general's
      office."

      Nadine Strossen, the board president, confirmed in an
      e-mail message that "someone" in the attorney
      general's office had called in his personal capacity
      to tell the A.C.L.U. of concern about the issue and
      that the executive committee had discussed it.

      "It determined that these details were not germane to
      the board's general discussion of the issues raised"
      in the report on the rights and responsibilities of
      board members that contained the controversial
      proposals, she wrote.

      Ms. Kaminer, who is leaving the board, and two other
      board members who were granted anonymity because they
      were afraid to speak publicly given the pending
      proposals, said an executive committee member had told
      them that Gerald Rosenberg, the assistant attorney
      general in charge of the New York State charities
      bureau, recently had spoken with Antonia Grumbach, a
      lawyer for the A.C.L.U., and told her the proposals
      might raise issues for his office if they were
      adopted.

      In a telephone interview from France, Mr. Rosenberg
      declined to say whether he had spoken with Ms.
      Grumbach. "There is no pending investigation of the
      A.C.L.U. by my office at this time," he said.

      Speaking in general terms, Mr. Rosenberg said he would
      have concerns if any nonprofit organization limited
      its board members' ability to speak publicly about
      policies. "If a public charity did adopt as a bylaw or
      a binding resolution that barred its directors from
      discussing public policy outside the boardroom, it
      might well be of concern to us," he said.

      The proposals are in a report on the rights and
      responsibilities of board members that includes a
      description of the bylaws pertinent to directors and
      proposals that address conflicts of interest. But the
      board discussion on Saturday was primarily on the
      provisions related to board members' ability to speak
      publicly about the A.C.L.U.


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