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ACLU picks Brooklyn law professor as president

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Indi Guy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-18-08 11:25 PM
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ACLU picks Brooklyn law professor as president
Source: WJLA (ABC)

NEW YORK - The American Civil Liberties Union elected a new president on Saturday, choosing a constitutional law scholar who said she would reach out to African-Americans and to religious communities where the group has often been viewed more as foe than friend. "We plan to reach out to communities where the ACLU is not well-known or not well-understood," said Brooklyn Law School professor Susan Herman, the organization's general counsel until the vote.

"There's a very widespread misimpression that the ACLU opposes religion" despite its efforts to protect rights to religious expression, Herman told The Associated Press, adding that she was surprised "there aren't more people in the African-American community that believe the ACLU is their organization."

Herman's selection gives the organization a new public face for the first time in nearly two decades. Nadine Strossen, the ACLU's longest-serving president and the first woman to hold the job, had led the group since 1991, overseeing a substantial rise in formal membership and national staff.

The ACLU became especially active following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, challenging U.S. government practices regarding espionage, prisoner interrogations and the detention of terrorism suspects...

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