Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Would the ACLU Still Defend Nazis’ Right To March in Skokie?

The dominant culture in most any society typically tries to impose its own moral paradigm as a matter of law. Now that liberals have the cultural upper hand, they’re just doing what people do. All political factions seem to be terminally susceptible to this, including anarchists and libertarians, with the exception of rare Stirnerite personality types (which seems to be an innate characteristic rather than a socially learned one). It seems the only to this is the one postulated by Antony Sutton, i.e. decentralized societies based on local-self rule by voluntary associations, voluntary communties, in order to keep different moralities (tribes and sects) from preying on each other.

By Nick Gillespie, Reason

In 1977, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) went to court to defend the rights of American neo-Nazis to march through the streets of Skokie, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago home to many Holocaust survivors. The group defended the Nazis’ right to demonstrate and won the case on First Amendment grounds, but 30,000 members quit the organization in protest.

The Skokie case cemented the image of the ACLU as a principled defender of free speech. The following year, Ira Glasser was elevated from head of the New York state chapter to the national organization’s executive director, a position he would hold for the next 23 years. Now he’s the subject of a new documentary, Mighty Ira, that celebrates his time leading the charge against government regulation of content on the internet, hate speech laws, speech codes on college campuses, and more.


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