Blog of Rights

Louise
Melling

Louise Melling (@LibertyLouiseis a Deputy Legal Director of the ACLU and the Director of its Center for Liberty. The Center encompasses the ACLU’s work on reproductive freedom, women’s rights, lesbian gay bisexual and transgender rights, and freedom of religion and belief. Before assuming this role, Ms. Melling was Director of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, in which capacity she oversaw nationwide litigation, communications research, public education campaigns, and advocacy efforts in the state legislatures. Ms. Melling has appeared in federal and state courts around the country to challenge laws that restrict reproductive rights. She has appeared in many media outlets, including CNN, PBS News Hour, Frontline, the New York Times, Washington Post, and USA Today.

Really, Mr. President?

Really, Mr. President?

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU & Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 5:24pm
I've just read the statement the president issued for the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision holding that the right of privacy encompasses the decision of a woman to end a pregnancy. The statement includes many important sentiments. But, to me, it is most striking for what it fails to say: nowhere does the statement mention the word “abortion.”
Really, Mr. President?

Really, Mr. President?

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU & Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 5:24pm
I've just read the statement the president issued for the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision holding that the right of privacy encompasses the decision of a woman to end a pregnancy. The statement includes many important sentiments. But, to me, it is most striking for what it fails to say: nowhere does the statement mention the word “abortion.”

When Talking to Parents Isn't an Option

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 12:00pm

On Friday, the ACLU joined with Planned Parenthood and the Center for Reproductive Rights in challenging a law that requires a teen to notify a parent or go to court before having an abortion. It is critical that laws like this don't go unchallenged.…

Stand Up For Religious Freedom, Don't Hide Behind It

By Donna Lieberman, New York Civil Liberties Union & Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 4:13pm

"Of course you have the right to build a mosque, but it is insensitive to build it there."

This is the newest version of the call from critics of the proposed Islamic center in downtown New York City. The sentiment may at first blush…

The Other Super Bowl: Speech vs. Speech

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 4:08pm

By now, you've caught wind of the fact that, during this weekend's Super Bowl, CBS plans to air an ad featuring University of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow and his mother talking about the circumstances of Tim's birth. Focus on the Family has…

Reflections on a Decade of Reproductive Freedom

Reflections on a Decade of Reproductive Freedom

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 2:38pm

This week, we mark the 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision that significantly expanded the ability of women across the country to decide whether and when to become a parent. We also stand at the beginning of a new decade and at a moment that calls for reflection.

Get on the Bus

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 2:07pm

I'm back in New York after an action-packed, anti-Stupak day at the capitol. It was exhilarating — buses from all over, from Mississippi and Wisconsin and Maine; an overflow crowd at the noon rally (did you catch I said overflow!); and a…

Common Hopes

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 1:56pm

(Originally posted on Daily Kos.)

"We may have different stories, but we hold common hopes; that we may not look the same and we may not have come from the same place, but we all want to move in the same direction — towards a better…

Toward a Universal Declaration of Reproductive Freedom

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 12:17pm

To reach our full potential as human beings, each of us must be free to make personal and private decisions about our lives free from unwarranted government intrusion. With whom do we form intimate relationships and enjoy a private sexual life?…

Decisive Victories for Reproductive Freedom

By Louise Melling, Director, Center of Liberty; Deputy Legal Director, ACLU at 12:57pm

What an incredible night. Voters in South Dakota, Colorado, and California stopped three ballot measures that would have seriously threatened the ability of women and families to make private health care decisions. While these initiatives were…

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