KKK seeks help from American Civil Liberties Union in adopting Georgia highway

A KKK member participating in a 2009 march in Pulaski, Tennessee.

The American Civil Liberties Union is considering representing the Ku Klux Klan after the notorious white nationalist organization was banned from participating in a Georgia adopt-a-highway program.

Since 1919, the ACLU has fought to protect Constitutional rights. The group is often cited for its crusades for free speech for student, as well as its efforts against the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk tactics, which the ACLU claims lead to racial profiling and unfair treatment of minorities.

Today, though, the ACLU is mulling over the decision to assist a local chapter of the KKK after the Georgia Department of Transportation said the white supremacist group could not proceed with plans to clean a stretch of Georgia State Route 515 in Union County.

Keith Golden, commissioner of the state Department of Transportation, told the chapter that the highway was not safe for clean-up crews, according to CNN. Golden also said KKK members cleaning the highway might pose as a distraction.

“The impact of erecting a sign naming an organization which has a long-rooted history of civil disturbance would cause a significant public concern,” Golden wrote. “Impacts include safety of the traveling public, potential social unrest, driver distraction or interference with the flow of traffic.”

ACLU officials are looking into whether or not the state of Georgia is violating the KKK’s freedom of speech. Debbie Seagraves, executive director for the ACLU of Georgia, said the state is supposed to provide an alternate highway to clean if the one requested by a group is too unsafe. Seagraves also argued that the state cannot deny the right of speech based on a potential negative reaction of others.

This wouldn’t be the first time the civil rights union defended a controversial and arguably unpopular cause — in 1978, the ACLU fought for a Nazi group’s right to organize a march through a Chicago neighborhood that was home to many Holocaust survivors.

“The decision to take the case was a demonstration of the ACLU’s commitment to the principle that constitutional rights must apply to even the most unpopular groups if they’re going to be preserved for everyone,” according to the ACLU’s website. “Many now consider this one of the ACLU’s finest hours.”

The ACLU also dedicates much of its resources to fighting for equality for “people of color, women, gay and transgender people, prisoners, immigrants and people with disabilities.”


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

New statue of Penn State's Paterno set for…

By David DeKokHARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Fundraising for a new statue depicting Joe Paterno "as the man he was and not Joe the football coach"…

National

On newly released tape, 'Squeaky' Fromme says was…

Manson Family member Squeaky Fromme told a mental health examiner in newly released interview the "X" she carved in her forehead was meant to separate her from "the system."

Local

New York-based Century 21 store coming to The…

The former Strawbridge & Clothier building will once again host a department store. City officials on Thursday announced New York-based Century 21 Department Stores will…

National

Electric Zoo tickets on sale Tuesday as festival…

Electric Zoo tickets go on sale Tuesday. The festival announced plans to amp up security after two attendees died last year from apparent drug overdoses.

Movies

Tribeca: 'Goodbye to All That' star Paul Schneider…

Paul Schneider talks about his new film "Goodbye to All That," not acting too much and how he'd rather indulge in simple pleasures than play the scene.

The Word

Taylor Swift battles paparazzi daily at Tribeca penthouse

We're entranced by these photos of poor Taylor Swift leaving her Tribeca apartment.

Movies

Tribeca: Nikki Reed on going funny for a…

"Intramural" star Nikki Reed talks about being the straight person in a broad comedy, spending time in Austin and how "Thirteen" was a "miracle."

Movies

Interview: 'The Quiet Ones' star Sam Claflin on…

"Hunger Games" co-star Sam Claflin talks about his new horror film "The Quiet Ones," plus how technology connects him with fans.

MLB

The return of Cole Hamels brings optimism

Cole Hamels’ quality start Wednesday was a nice change of pace from his recent season debuts.

MLB

Tony Gwynn Jr. a nice surprise for Phillies

Tony Gwynn Jr. has been a plus in every way for the Phillies.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

5 infamous pitcher ejections for cheating

Never fear Yankees fans, Michael Pineda is far from the first MLB pitcher to be thrown out of a game for cheating.

Food

Hai Street Kitchen opening in Rittenhouse May 22

Japanese cuisine will get a Chipotle-style twist at Hai Street Kitchen & Co., a new casual, quick-food restaurant opening near Rittenhouse Square on May 22.…

Parenting

New study: Inside the wage gap between boys…

According to a new study, there's a wage gap between boys and girls, with boys earning more allowance for less chores.

Tech

From Apple TV to Fire TV, big changes…

Apple is set to launch a new generation of it's Apple TV, which grossed over $1 billion in 2013. But competition from Amazon and Google looms.

Style

Katy Perry releases a new Claire’s collection

Katy Perry expands her empire by releasing an accessories collection at Claire's.