I used to be a “card carrying member” of the ACLU, and while I am no longer I am still thankful they are around because while I don’t always agree with them they are certainly a vital force in keeping our country free.
Antiterrorism training materials used by the Department of Defense teach that public protests should be regarded as “low level terrorism,” according to a letter of complaint sent to the department today by the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California.
“Teaching employees that dissent on issues of public concern is something to be feared, rather than encouraged, is a dangerously counterproductive use of scarce security resources, making us less safe as a democracy,” Northern California ACLU Staff Attorney Ann Brick and ACLU Washington National Security Policy Council Michael German wrote in the letter to Gail McGinn, Acting Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness.
“DoD employees cannot accomplish their mission of protecting our nation and its values unless they understand that those values encompass the right to criticize our government through protest activities,” they wrote. “It is imperative that they are taught the difference between political, religious or social activism and terrorism.”