The Pinellas County American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) honored our St. Petersburg Area League with the Gardner Beckett Civil Liberties Award in recognition of the League’s heroic work on fair and equitable redistricting in Florida. The award was presented at the annual ACLU Bill of Rights dinner on Wednesday evening, March 23, 2016.
The Pinellas County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union confers this honor upon individuals who have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to basic civil liberties, principles, and values inherent in the Bill of Rights. In the footsteps of Gardner Beckett, these recipients exemplify an unflinching commitment to the defense of our constitution and its guarantees of equal protection, due process, and simple justice.
Gardner W. Beckett, Jr., Friend of Civil Liberties Award
“If you tell me that the ACLU is only interested in conventional positions, then you are telling me that it’s no longer doing its job. It’s because you have an organization that’s out on the point, so to speak, on the cutting edge of civil rights, that other people can look upon its accomplishments as acceptable, but still say, ‘Now it’s going too far.’ And of course, the answer is, in this area, as a matter of policy, we can never go too far. We continually have to press back the curtains of repression, and if we don’t, they’ll simply close.” —Gardner W. Beckett, Jr., 1990