And The ACLU Takes A First Class Seat On The Brett Kavanaugh Ethics Train Wreck. Of Course It Has. (The ABA Stayed In Coach)

The American Civil Liberty Union has decided to make an “exception” to its supposedly unshakable policy of being non-partisan and non-political—Oh,  the pop-up fundraising appeal the group is currently showing on its website says to contribute to “stop Trump’s attack on civil liberties.” Then it vanishes, with the permanent text on the site staying abstract and without any overtly partisan slant.  Nice. And dishonest!—and announced its opposition to Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

This should not have surprised anyone, because the ACLU has become a sham organization, claiming to be non-partisan and apolitical while every day making it increasingly obvious that it, like so many organizations that take that pose (including virtually all of the mainstream news media), it is a fully committed ally of the Democratic Party. Nonetheless, there is always hope that at crucial moments in the nation’s history, organizations will find their soul, their guys and their principles before they seep away.

For this we need look no farther than The American Bar Association, another “non-partisan” group that habitually endorses Democratic Party agenda items that should not concern it at all. Its membership is overwhelmingly Democratic, and being that this entire section of the political spectrum is in the process of being ethically corrupted, many members, including members of its governing body, were prepared to turn on Brett Kanavaugh, a judge the organization had rated as very qualified for the Supreme Court, and recommend his rejection as a consequence of unsubstantiated, last minute allegations of sexual misconduct by an accuser dredging up dim memories from more than three decades ago. As a lesser tactic, many were in favor of bolstering the Democratic Party’s disingenuous call for an open ended FBI investigation, not because it is likely to clarify anything, but because it will accomplishe the Party’s stated objective since before Dr. Ford was persuaded, or pushed, to play the part of Anita Hill in this adaptation of “The Clarence Thomas Hearings.” They want to delay until after the November elections.

Thus it was that Robert Carlson, the latest Democratic Party contributor to lead the organization, wrote this letter on ABA letterhead, falsely stating that he was speaking for the ABA itself:

“The American Bar Association urges the United States Senate Judiciary Committee (and, as appropriate, the full Senate) to conduct a confirmation vote on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States only after an appropriate background check into the allegations made by Professor Ford and others is completed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

Rather than allow him to hijack its process and integrity, the ABA sent this letter to the Judiciary Committee, clarifying that Carlson was speaking for himself only:

Of course, if it were really a non-partisan, non-ideological organization, the ABA would be in the process of removing Carlson from office. In every organization, falsely using one’s post to imply organizational support of a personal view is a firing offense. Instead, the ABA took the face-saving measure of posting Carlson’s misleading letter (lawyers are prohibited from engaging in misleading conduct) under a link saying, “ABA President Calls For…” THAT’S deceit (lawyers are prohibited from engaging in deceit). Most readers will not notice the material distinction between the President of the ABA’s position and the official ABA position, and that’s just the way the association wants it.

Well, it’s not exactly integrity, but it’s a lot closer than what the ACLU has become.

One could consider this post just an addendum to this one,  in which I translated the official ACLU statement in June that, once you plowed through all the equivocation, announced that the organization would now be openly partisan and actively oppose “those with whom it disagrees” and take “counter-measures.” I wrote,

Wading through the many ‘but ifs” and “on the other hands” that make the memo a masterpiece of equivocation, a careful reader can only come to one fair conclusion: the current ACLU staff and leadership have a crippling conflict of interest, and rather than effectively eliminating it, has chosen to rationalize it. The conflict of interest is that the ACLU is now a full-fledged progressive advocacy organization that views maintaining its ideological allies in the political culture wars a co-equal objective to protecting the rights of all Americans. That means that it cannot be trusted to exercise non-partisan, unbiased judgements regarding whose rights to protect. Worse still, the memo flatly states that the ACLU’s current position is that “there is no presumption that the First Amendment trumps all other amendments.” This is a symbolic canary dying in the poisoned mine shaft, for many of the group’s admitted allies, including the Democratic Party, are increasingly hostile to freedom of speech as an absolute value essential to the vitality and survival of American democracy. Now we know that the ACLU can no longer be counted upon to defend that freedom—it depends, says the memo, on balancing a myriad of factors.

Thus yesterday’s announcement was entirely consistent with mission of the New, Wholly Democratic Party-Owned American Civil Liberties Union:

NEW YORK — In the wake of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s sworn testimony of sexual abuse at the hands of Brett Kavanaugh, the American Civil Liberties Union has announced its opposition to his nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

As a matter of organizational policy, the ACLU does not support or oppose candidates for political or judicial office. In this instance, the national board held an extraordinary meeting, and has chosen to make an exception to that policy.

“The ACLU’s board of directors, deeply concerned by the allegations raised in recent weeks, has made a rare exception to its longstanding policy and voted to oppose the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court,” said Susan Herman, president of the ACLU.

The ACLU’s national board of directors passed a resolution stating:

“The ACLU opposes the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. There are credible allegations that Judge Kavanaugh has engaged in serious misconduct that have not been adequately investigated by the Senate. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s credible testimony, subsequent allegations of sexual misconduct, the inadequate investigation, and Judge Kavanaugh’s testimony at the hearing lead us to doubt Judge Kavanaugh’s fitness to serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.

“This is not a decision taken lightly. We cannot remain silent under these extraordinary circumstances about a lifetime appointment to the highest court of the land. The standard for such an appointment should be high, and the burden is on the nominee. That burden is not met as long as there are unresolved questions regarding the credible allegations of sexual assault.”  

“As a nonpartisan organization, the ACLU does not oppose Judge Kavanaugh based on predictions about how he would vote as a Justice. We oppose him in light of the credible allegations of sexual assault against him,” concluded Herman.

Under its current policy, the ACLU does not take formal positions on judicial nominations. This is the fourth instance in the organization’s 98-year history that the ACLU’s national board of directors has voted to oppose a nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.  Most recently, the organization did not endorse or oppose the nomination of Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch.

For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has worked in courts, legislatures, and communities to protect the constitutional rights of all people. With a nationwide network of offices and millions of members and supporters, the ACLU takes on the toughest civil liberties fights in pursuit of liberty and justice for all.

Thank goodness the ACLU has been protecting the right to engage in dishonest speech all these years.

1. Does anyone believe that the ACLU, completely staffed of late with hard left legal activists, really does not oppose Kavanaugh because he is viewed as a threat to progressive policies on the Court?

2. The supposed non-partisan watchdog of our civil liberties has announced that it is willing to jettison the core right of due process to defeat a conservative judge with an impeccable record—just ask the ABA. Why is that?

3.  The judge’s accuser was “sworn” and her account was “credible.” So were the judge’s denials! The very rights that the ACLU supposedly defends hold that it is the accuser, not the accused, who has the burden of proof. Dr. Ford offered no proof at all.

4. It is very difficult and often impossible to prove a negative, and the ACLU’s resolution is engaging in ethical and legal fantasy. Most frightening of all, it is endorsing a system by which an accusation has to be disproved by the accused, no matter how old or lacking in details that accusation is. This is the kind of totalitarian justice that the ACLU was founded to oppose. Now it is endorsing it.

5. The rampant Democratic rationalization that the basic rules of fairness and justice are inapplicable to a Supreme Court nominee has been audaciously and cynically wrong from the beginning. How convenient that Democrats have discovered an exception to due process and the burden of proof just when they want to savage a qualified conservative judge to protect their desired ideological mix on the Court! How stunning and depressing that the ACLU is willing to embrace such an exception, even when it is directly opposed to its mission and values.

Thus, tragically, we can add the ACLU to the growing group of organizations, officials and individuals corrupted by the Left’s furious, anything goes, the ends justify the means attack on Brett Kavanaugh. The last part of the previous post is an apt summary here:

America must have a dedicated defender of the First Amendment and the Bill of Rights that will not weigh what opinions are worthy of protecting. Now that the ACLU has made it clear that it doesn’t want the job, we had better find another one fast.

 

 

19 Comments

Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Law & Law Enforcement, Philanthropy, Non-Profits and Charity, Rights

19 responses to “And The ACLU Takes A First Class Seat On The Brett Kavanaugh Ethics Train Wreck. Of Course It Has. (The ABA Stayed In Coach)

  1. The Shadow

    And yet I suspect the ABA wrings their hands over the poor reputation of lawyers and how their ethics have become a running punch line. I know many lawyers, and they are overwhelmingly good and honorable people. But the visible “leadership” at places like bar associations is severely lacking these qualities, not just in direct action, but inaction on obvious abuses of ethics. Their retort of “we have an ethics code” rings about as hollow as journalists and their so-called “unbiased reporting.”

  2. adimagejim

    I accuse all staffers and members of the ACLU with child molestation. Until the FBI concludes its thousand year investigation of all, they should be barred from providing legal services of any kind regardless of the veracity of my allegations.

    Prove me wrong. And even after the thousand year investigation proves me wrong, I contend I have been scarred for life by my personal memories of each and every one of those accusations. I demand my feeling take precedence and their innocence be ignored.

    There. Eff the ACLU.

  3. Joe Fowler

    Years ago, as a child-libertarian I sent the ACLU money now and then. They are sadly now just another left-wing lobbying concern.
    As much fun as it is to ridicule frothing-at-the-mouth libertarians, I would much prefer to see the ACLU completely staffed by individual rights absolutists than the current crew of soft Marxists.

  4. Wayne

    “. . . liberty and justice for all.” Oh, thank you so very much for your tireless fight for these principles with just a few exceptions ACLU! My check is in the mail. (sarcasm intended)

  5. E2

    This is your most important point:
    ================
    4. It is very difficult and often impossible to prove a negative, and the ACLU’s resolution is engaging in ethical and legal fantasy. Most frightening of all, it is endorsing a system by which an accusation has to be disproved by the accused, no matter how old or lacking in details that accusation is. This is the kind of totalitarian justice that the ACLU was founded to oppose. Now it is endorsing it.
    =================
    We are in big, big trouble. As I said yesterday, not too long ago all blacks were considered liars, and all whites truth-tellers who got the benefit of the doubt. All we’re doing here is changing the players. Men must be guilty if a woman says so. Men who deny accusations of sexual abuse are ipso facto liars. Women get the benefit of the doubt, and are assumed to be telling the truth even without any evidence. (BTW, I am a woman).

    The daughter of a friend of mine is very concerned and vocal on college sexual abuse. Any female student who accuses a male is considered a victim, courageous to be coming forward. This may often be the case, but clearly not always. And this same young woman (the daughter of a friend of mine) says alcohol has a lot to do with it. In the same conversation she admits her college provides FREE BEER for certain celebratory functions. Alcohol-fueled sexual abuse (or just sex) provided by the college enclave that is supposed to protect them? Astonishing. College students have been drinking and having sex since colleges were founded. I suppose every male who ever kissed a female student is now fodder for sexual abuse accusations.

    On the ABA. How many people know that the American Bar Association is an entirely voluntary, advisory organization, that it is the state bars that admit (or not, or disbar) lawyers, have their own Rules of Professional Conduct, and adopt ABA ‘opinions’ only if they feel like it. Clearly, the ABA has a great PR machine: every legal movie and television program presents the ABA as this majestic, overarching organization that speaks for all the lawyers in the US. The opposite is true. Not exactly on point, I know, but I’m really sick of this perception.

    And you’re right: Carlson should have been fired. But then the ABA does not want to tarnish its perceived majestic reputation, so damage-control was the order of business, not correct management.

    • SGS

      Thank you – I didn’t know this point about the state bars being the real powers that be and not the ABA. Did the bar in which Kavanaugh ought to be registered say anything about him?

      • E2

        Not that I know of, but they wouldn’t. State bars certify lawyers, discipline misconduct when necessary, hold mandatory continuing legal education programs, conduct pro bono programs, and publish. Generally, they do not get involved in politics, though some do lobby for or against legislation that may affect the practice of law..

      • JutGory

        The same is true of most such associations. I am licensed in Minnesota, which has a voluntary association where lawyers are able to collaborate, propose legislation. It still has no disciplinary authority; that is handled by the courts.

        I would imagine the same is true of the American Medical Association. The state still regulate medicine, but the national association allows and encourages interstate collaboration.

        So, while the ABA has no real power, they still have value. (I am not a member of the ABA.)

        -Jut

        • It does have value. It would have more value if it stuck to its mission and didn’t take partisan political positions. I’ve teached programs for the ABA, and done other pro bono work for the ABA. I’ve even been a member a couple of times.

  6. SGS

    I honestly don’t want to indulge in the Trump 4D chess conspiracy, but do you think the other judge he would nominate, his “real” choice, is likelier to be more to the right of Kavanaugh?

  7. Chris Marschner

    Why does the ACLU have a national political director.

  8. Totalitarianism and the destruction of the United States Constitution; Progressives want it and are fighting for it in the hearts of the people, social justice warriors are actually trying to force it with their active intimidation, the political right is mouthing the words of opposition and project token measures to oppose it but they are really not on the front lines fighting against it. We see it daily; organizations, companies, media, and individuals are caving into the open intimidation of totalitarianism and preempting social shunning. Does anyone really think that our society isn’t in a tailspin towards totalitarianism?

    When does the real fight begin?

    • Michael R.

      In 2016, 95% of the federal employees who donated to the presidential election donated to Hillary Clinton. Less than 10% of college professors are Republicans (40% of colleges don’t appear to have a single Republican faculty member). Except for the 60% of Fox News that is Republican, where are there any Republicans in the mainstream media? How do things like this happen? Democrats claim it is because they are smarter than Republicans. I think it is more likely that Democrats are much more bigoted than Republicans. These numbers suggest there has been widespread hiring discrimination against conservatives for decades.

      I see this played out in my personal life. I know few people who vote Republican who view the Republican party in religious terms. I know a lot of Democrats that will vote against their conscience for the Democratic Party. I know no Republican voter who opposes having Democrats in the workplace. I know a lot of Democrats who oppose having Republicans in their workplace. Most ‘Republicans’ are people who vote Republican. I don’t know a single person who identifies themselves by the Republican Party and I am including the Republican elected officials I know. I know over 25 people whose personal identity is wrapped up in the Democratic Party. The Democratic Party has a cult-like appeal that the Republican Party just doesn’t and we are seeing this played out as we speak.

      So, what does this have to do with the problems we are currently having? We are reaching a point where we cannot tolerate an anti-American cult to control our government, our sources of information, and our educational system. We cannot allow unelected, unfireable civil servants to dictate who is allowed to be elected or appointed in our government. To do so, we somehow have to take back the government from the 2.8 million unelected Democrats who currently run the government. To save our society, we have to take back our education system from the Democratic system that has intentionally refused to educate our children and intentionally brainwashed them into hating our country and civilization itself. We need new media channels not controlled by Democrats, even though whenever they crop up, they are suppressed by the Democratic machine (Facebook, Google, etc).

      The Democratic Party cares about power, not the United States or its population. They have been intent for decades on increasing their control over the lives of Americans to increase their own power. Look at what has happened to the black community in the US. The scary thing is that Detroit, Chicago, California, and Venezuela are not failures in their eyes, but the successes of their ideology. That is what they have planned for us all, complete dependence on the government. So, any ideas on how to fix this or are we all just headed for collectivist hell?

      • There will be shooting involved before they accomplish their goals. You see, they have to take our guns. Peons with guns are dangerous to their betters.

        Seems there are ‘many’ hunters who can hit a man sized target at 600 yards, and no amount of armed guards can stop it, if you ever are in the open.

        Many = a million, conservatively. For comparison, there are around 200,000 actual combat troops in the US Military (support roles not included)

        • Michael R.

          You are thinking the wrong way. Look at our gun control laws. The 1968 Black Control Act…sorry…Gun Control Act focused on cheap and small guns. A 600 yard gun is not what they are worried about. A .25 auto is really small and can be held in the palm of the hand without being seen. The .25 autos used to be dirt cheap. The 1968 Gun Control Act banned the importation of small, cheap guns. The media picked up the charge and labeled them ‘Saturday Night Specials’ to vilify them and get support against them. There is nothing scarier to people in power that poor people with guns they can’t readily see.

          • Given the recent sudden glut of ever smaller, inexpensive, concealable pistols in calibers far stronger than .25, the elite must be shaking in their boots.

            You have to get very close to use such a gun, without special training and practice the poor will never get. Like 20 feet close. Very easy to place bodyguards out that far and reduce the odds of a kill shot. Level 1 body armor also mitigates most pistol bullets without being noticable on the wearer.

            Rifles laugh at body armor, and are far more dangerous, imho, than pistols to politicians.

            Your mileage may vary.

  9. Bob

    I just received a disgusting campaign letter from the ACLU disguised as a “poll.” It was one of those leading … “do you still beat your wife?” type things.

    Are you concerned that Trump is a threat to LGBTQ people….?

    Are you concerned that he is stacking the Supreme Court with zealots….?

    Are you concerned that he wears white shoes after Labor Day…?

    I returned it, of course, with some choice language that I do not think they expect.

    If any reader gets the same poll, please take a moment to actually fill it out and tell them how loathsome they have become.

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