Lawrence Hamermesh

People who think that the ACLU is a godless organization misunderstand both the ACLU and the Constitution, and why both are so important to me and to our nation.  The genius of the First Amendment that the ACLU defends is the freedom to engage in religious practice according to the individual citizen’s beliefs, and the freedom from government-sponsored religious observance.

That two-sided protection promotes not a godless nation, but a nation with a profusion and variety of religious communities.  As a member of a religious minority – as so many of us are in today’s pluralistic society – I’m grateful for this protection that has attracted so many people fleeing theocratic persecution abroad.

People who think the ACLU is godless simply resent its efforts to prevent them from using the institutions of government to force others to adhere to the majority’s religious beliefs.

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