I learned from my parents that discrimination is a terrible thing and freedom is a wonderful thing.
Freedom of speech is essential to the nation’s continued progress, since only if all ideas may be expressed will the good ones win out. I want to be sure I can say whatever I want on the issues I care about, and I know, as Eleanor Holmes Norton said, “the only way to make sure people you agree with can speak is to support the rights of people you don’t agree with.”
Freedom to follow the religion I choose, or not to follow any religion, is my business and nobody else’s, so I want to keep the government out of it. I don’t want someone else making those decisions for me.
Also, for as long as I can remember, I have believed discrimination is intolerable and unacceptable. I cannot understand how intelligent people can think otherwise. But sometimes they act as if they do. The ACLU is important to me because it works every day and on every front to combat discrimination. My family and I may not be targets of discrimination today, but if anyone can be discriminated against, everyone can be. Tomorrow, if not today.
In the end, I suppose I support the ACLU because I’m selfish. This is my country, and I want to make sure it is as good as it can be.