Our commitment to the right to counsel for people who can not afford a lawyer is no secret. I was a part of the group the developed the Maine Commission on Indigent Legal Services, and the ACLU of MAINE is committed to making sure this new Commission can do its job. One of its most important jobs is to make sure that the lawyers appointed by (and paid for by) the state to represent people accused of crimes have the skills, the experience, and the resources necessary to do the job.
Almost all of the work of the ACLU of MAINE Legal Program is focused directly on the needs and concerns of the people of Maine. But, sometimes a case that originates outside our borders can have the potential to seriously threaten our civil rights and civil liberties here. We are lucky at the ACLU to have fully staffed legal programs in nearly every state, and when we get a chance to band together on a matter that concerns a number of us, all the better.
Allowing gay men and lesbians to serve openly in the United States military will not threaten our security or destabilize our armed forces, but don't take my word for it. Instead, consider the findings and conclusions of the recently-completed Pentagon study of the possible effects of repealing "don't ask, don't tell."