Producer/host: Amy Browne
Contributor: Eric T. Olson
Topic: A report on the work of the Maine Civil Liberties Union, including an interview with Executive Director, Shenna Bellows
“The Maine Civil Liberties Union (MCLU) was founded in 1968 with the purpose of advancing and preserving civil liberties of Maine people through litigation, advocacy, public education and lobbying. The MCLU follows these basic principles: the right of free expression; the right to dissent; the right to religious freedom; the right to equal treatment for all people; the right to fair play in encounters with government; and the right to be let alone, to be secure from interference in private matters.
” The MCLU is the state affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
“The mission of the ACLU is to assure that the Bill of Rights—amendments to the Constitution that guard against unwarranted governmental control—is preserved for each new generation. To understand the ACLU’s purpose, it is important to distinguish between the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The Constitution itself, whose bicentennial we celebrated in 1987, authorizes the government to act. The Bill of Rights limits that authority.”