I have a great deal of affection for the beautiful town of Harpswell.  When I was a college student, I had a number of friends who wintered in beautiful (if poorly insulated) summer homes along Harpswell sound, and I still have strong memories of some of the area's beautiful sites.

That is one of the many reasons why I am so pleased that the town of Harpswell took the positive step last night to amend the "public participation" policy for Select Board meetings.  As the Sun Journal reported, the ACLU of Maine wrote to the Board earlier this year to express our concern about a provision in the policy that allowed for censorship of speakers based on the content of the speech.  After a lengthy meeting, the Board has amended the policy to remove the offending provision.

The ACLU of Maine is always prepared to do whatever is necessary to protect the right to free speech, including litigation.  But, we much prefer it when government entities themselves safeguard the First Amendment rights of the public.  This Board's actions are particularly praiseworthy, considering that the policy change will make it easier for the public to criticize the board and its decisions, but that is how a democracy is supposed to work.