American Civil Liberties Union

= Audio Available Online
Bill Allison, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky, acted as an appeals attorney for one of the Black Six defendants, Ruth Bryant. The Black Six were a group of five men and one woman who were prosecuted for inciting rebellion during the Parkland Uprising of 1968. Allison also represented the Black Panthers in Louisville and in Memphis, Tennessee. In this interview, Allison speaks about cases he was involved in involving government repression and retaliation against Civil Rights activists and how he became involved in that work through the Southern Conference Educational Fund, serving as SCEF's lawyer from 1969 to 1974.
Cunningham credits her Catholic education for her affinity to social justice issues. After a brief stint in Chicago, she returns to Louisville in 1968 and becomes involved in the “coffee house movement” and eventually begins working for the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union (KCLU). In the interview, Cunningham offers an insider’s view into the organization’s activities related to school desegregation, improving jail conditions and assisting conscientious objectors. The bulk of the interview deals with the work of the Women’s Right Committee, a new effort at the time within the KCLU that focused on the intersection of civil liberties and women’s concerns and bringing those discussion to the forefront, both in the public arena and in the priorities of the KCLU. Topics include reproductive freedom, the Anaconda Aluminum case, and the growing recognition among women and the general public that gender discrimination existed and that the KCLU sought to be involved in changing the status quo.
Interview regarding American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. Index available.

Born in Flushing (Queens), New York City, N.Y. Attended the University at Buffalo (SUNY) as an undergraduate and Boston University School of Law, graduated in 1977. First work after law school was in legal services. Began working with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Kentucky in 1983 as a volunteer cooperating attorney. A year later (1984), Friedman became the group’s general counsel and served in that position for 25 years often taking the lead on cases that dealt with reproductive freedom, separation of church and state, freedom of speech and other civil liberties issues. In 2005, he successfully argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the ACLU of Kentucky that the display of the Ten Commandments in a courthouse violated constitutional principles.

This is the second interview with David Friedman for this organizational history project. The previous interview was conducted by Mary Pace on March 10, 2011. That interview and its index are on deposit at the Oral History Center of the University of Louisville. In this second interview, Friedman revisits some of the same themes from his first interview: great pride in the ACLU’s mission, a genuine and personal passion for the legal work, the importance of educating the public on civil liberties and how media relations played a role in that work. Friedman discusses how Kentucky’s politics and culture have placed it on frontline of efforts to protect reproductive freedom and the separation of church and state.

Interview regarding American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. Index available.
Arthur Kling relates his experiences during the desegregation of Louisville Public Schools. His involvement with the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union and NAACP is fully discussed. He also analyzes the attitudes of people in the period of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s.
Interview regarding American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky.
Interview regarding American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. Index available.
Suzanne "Suzy" Post, born in Louisville in 1933, was a mother of five living in the East End of Louisville when she began to be involved in the civil rights movement in Louisville. Post became active at a young age, choosing to do a project on the Louisville Urban League when in school and then joining the NAACP at Indiana University. In 1957, she joined the ACLU and then in 1969 became President of the Louisville ACLU before moving on to become a national Vice President for 12 years. She discusses in this interview her first memory of walking in a picket line, her time as a Jesse Jackson delegate in 1984, and her experience as a white woman in the movement. She discusses her involvement in fundraising for the open housing demonstrations as well as helping to find school board candidates for JCPS who were sympathetic to busing and getting them elected and educated. Post's involvement in the busing movement in Louisville was one that she discussed in length. In 1970 she worked as the President of an affiliate that worked to talk with communities and people within the community on the busing plans that they wanted to be implemented. Post discusses the first day that busing began as well as the atmosphere in the city and provides information on how she stayed active once busing had begun within Louisville.
Interview regarding American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. Index available.