Friday, January 20, 2006

Volokh and the ACLU 

I read the Volokh Conspiracy. Daily. It's one of those group blogs where there's one blogger with whom I usually agree (Orin Kerr) and then there's everyone else. Part of the fun over there is reading the comments from the primarily conservative commenters when they tear into Orin for saying something that may tip over into liberal territory.

Well, I can't remember when it started, but at some point, the commenters tore into the ACLU, too. What happened next was pretty interesting. Eugene Volokh began defending the ACLU - while carefully explaining where he disagrees with them on individual issues - as a principled organization truly devoted to civil liberties. One example is this series of posts - the list at the bottom has the whole series. Click here for another example where Eugene responds to another blogger.

The top post is about the ACLU of Texas here in Austin, where I clerked after my first year in law school. Some may find it difficult to believe that the ACLU would support broader gun rights, but that's one place where my time in law school has changed my mind to some degree. If you read Scott Henson's take on the issue, you'll get the ACLUTX line. These days I tend to agree with the ACLU's position, if not the NRA's. A confluence of events led me to change my mind on this issue, but I should tip my hat to my favorite Libertarian Mormon, Mr. Probative. It was a series of conversations with him that first got me thinking about the issue more seriously, and questioning the liberal dogma on the topic.

Anywho...this started out as a post about Volokh defending the ACLU and ended up about gun rights, but that's just how the cookie crumbles. At least I'm back posting about actual issues again...if that's a good thing, anyway.


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