The ACLU backed a suit to remove the Mt. Soledad cross
The San Diego City Council voted 5-2 to honor the American Civil Liberties Union with a special day of recognition, even after the organization sued the city and collected $900,000 in taxpayer funds.
The plan was offered by council member Toni Atkins, who said she stood “by the resolution” and commended “the ACLU for the work they do.”
Even before the vote, a spokeswoman for the ACLU expressed gratitude for the formal honor.
“Thank you for recognizing the ACLU,” said Rebecca Roberts.
Two speakers opposed the recognition, including Heather Cameron, a representative of the law firm of Charles LiMandri.
LiMandri also serves as the West Coast director for the Thomas More Law Center, which along with other organizations, including the American Center for Law and Justice, donated thousands of hours of time to fight the ACLU’s demand that San Diego remove a historic cross from the Mt. Soledad Veterans’ Memorial. The case continued even after the federal government took over the site and San Diego no longer had control over it.
Cameron told the council members “one of the great myths” is that the ACLU started out as a pro-civil rights organization.
ACLU founder Roger Baldwin said, “Communism is the goal,” she told the council.
Cameron said Baldwin asserted that only a “small group of highly educated intellectuals” should dictate what everyone else believes.
In San Diego, the ACLU cost the city’s taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars by raising the fight over the Mt. Soledad cross and continued the battle even after 76 percent of the voters supported maintaining the cross where it was built.
James Hartline, a Christian activist in San Diego, also spoke. He said the proposal to honor the ACLU was “one of the most repugnant acts” ever accomplished by the council and blamed the ACLU for a “long-term campaign of hate and religious bias against Christians.”
He cited a previous case brought against the city by the ACLU in which the organization collected $900,000 from city taxpayers.
“We do not want our names to be used to honor the American Civil Liberties Union,” Hartline said. “You are doing so in our name.”
A bipartisan team of council members, Tony Young and Brian Maienschein, opposed the resolution, and Jim Madaffer did not vote. The other five members – Kavin Faulconer, Atkins, Donne Frye, Ben Hueso and Scott Peters – went along.
Hartline previously told WND, “There has been no greater hate machine against our constitutional right to free religious expression in America than the ACLU.”
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