A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from July 13, 2010
American Criminal Liberties Union (American Civil Liberties Union nickname)

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) was founded in 1920, with the mission “to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.” Critics of the ACLU have claimed that the organization often defends anti-American speech and actions.

The ACLU has been dubbed the “American Criminal Liberties Union” since at least 1977. The nickname “American Criminal Liberties Union” has been used by many conservative commentators, including radio talk show hosts Bob Grant and Mark Levin. The nickname “Anti-American Criminal Liberties Union” has also been used, although less frequently.

Another ACLU nickname (cited in print since at least 1982) is “American Communist Lawyers Union.”


Wikipedia: American Civil Liberties Union
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) consists of two separate non-profit organizations: the ACLU Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization which focuses on litigation and communication efforts, and the American Civil Liberties Union, a 501(c)(4) organization which focuses on legislative lobbying. The ACLU’s stated mission is “to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.” It works through litigation, legislation, and community education. Founded in 1920 by Crystal Eastman, Roger Baldwin and Walter Nelles, the ACLU was the successor organization to the earlier National Civil Liberties Bureau founded during World War I. The ACLU reported over 500,000 members at the end of 2005.

Lawsuits brought by the ACLU have been influential in the evolution of Constitutional law. The ACLU provides legal assistance in cases in which it considers civil liberties to be at risk. Even when the ACLU does not provide direct legal representation, it often submits amicus curiae briefs.

Outside of its legal work, the organization has also engaged in lobbying of elected officials and political activism. The ACLU has been critical of elected officials and policies of both Democrats and Republicans.

Conservapedia: Mark Levin
Mark Reed Levin (born September 21, 1957) is a Constitutional lawyer, president of the the prestigious Landmark Legal Foundation in Washington D.C., a top-rated nationally syndicated conservative talk radio host and a best selling non-fiction author. Also, the former Chief of Staff for Attorney General Edwin Meese during the Reagan Administration.
(...)
The Mark Levin Lexicon
Levin holds disdain for the mainstream media and the politicians who pander to them. He often likes to refer to them in a derogatory and humorous way. It is Levin’s style that distinguishes himself from other radio personalities.
(...)
. American Civil Liberties Union = American Criminal Liberties Union

29 January 1977, Salt Lake Tribune (Salt Lake City, UT), The Public Forum, pg. 14, col. 3:
The ACLU should really be called the American Criminal Liberties Union.
(...)
NANCY B. WHITE

5 June 1977, Ada (OK) Evening News, Letters to the Editor, pg. 4A, col. 6:
THis can of worms was opened, as many inane projects are busily being prepared and pushed, by the A.C.L.U. (American Criminal Liberties Union).
(...)
The Rev. A. W. Lavender

Google Books
The Embattled Parent
By Gloria Lentz
Westport, CT: Arlington House
1980
Pg. 256:
Controversial radio talk-show host Bob Grant has even gone so far as to call them the “American Criminal Liberties Union” on the air.

Google Books
Victims of the System:
Crime Victims and Compensation in American Politics and Criminal Justice

By Robert Elias
Transaction Pub,
1984
Pg. 163:
A couple of others cited the legal barriers imposed on criminal-justice personnel, and the negative influence of “liberal” tendencies, such as the “American ‘Criminal’ Liberties Union.” as one official put it.

Google News Archive
21 July 1986, Palm Beach (FL) Post, Letters to the Editor, pg. 2E, col. 1:
They are not saddled with the American Civil Liberties Union (American Criminal Liberties Union) that constantly champions the cause of criminals and pornography.

Google Books
God is a conservative:
Religion, politics, and morality in contemporary America

By Kenneth J. Heineman
New York, NY: New York University Press
1998
Pg. 176:
After observing decades of political activism in the courts, many Americans must have thought that the initials ACLU stood for the American Criminal Liberties Union.

Google Books
In defense of American liberties:
A history of the ACLU

By Samuel Walker
Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press
1999
Pg. 342:
Daniel Popeo, of the Washington Legal Foundation, called it the “American Criminal Liberties Union.”

Media Matters for America
Hyman called ACLU “the Anti-American Criminal Liberties Union”
September 14, 2005 12:43 pm ET
Sinclair Broadcast Group commentator Mark Hyman referred to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) as “the Anti-American Criminal Liberties Union” on the September 13 edition of “The Point.”

Hyman has previously attacked the ACLU; for example, on the March 31 edition of “The Point,” Hyman claimed: “Not unlike the Communist Chinese, the ACLU abhors individual religious freedom, and it supports only those civil liberties that fit its narrow political agenda.”

From the September 13 edition of “The Point”:

The American Criminal Liberties Union fancies itself as the protector of individual rights. The reality is the ACLU is a bunch of ambulance chasers with an extremist agenda.

Last June, the Anti-Defamation League demanded the U.S. Naval Academy cease the ecumenical prayer, one that doesn’t recognize any specific religious figures, before noon meals. Midshipmen are to quietly observe as part of their development to foster religious tolerance as future Navy and Marine officers.

Now the ACLU has joined in. Like an ambulance-chasing lawyer, the ACLU has decided that it wants to sue; it just doesn’t have a client. No midshipman has ever complained.

Think about it: The ACLU will sue to stop voluntary prayer by the military and it will sue, demanding the military support Muslim religious practices by terrorist detainees.

A better name is the Anti-American Criminal Liberties Union.

And that’s The Point.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Tuesday, July 13, 2010 • Permalink