This is Fiction.
Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) posted a statement on their Frequently
Asked Questions section saying that "The
ACLU has never pursued the removal of religious symbols from personal
This wasn't a matter of the removal of religious symbols but one of
diversity, however. The ACLU and the Americans United for
Separation of Church and State filed a suit to convince the
Department of Veterans Affairs to agree to allow family members to choose
from 38 different religious symbols for headstones to represent the
variety of faiths practiced in the US.
Click for ACLU
Other emails have
surfaced over the years regarding the ACLU, religion and the Military
but this eRumor hit wide distribution in the Summer of 2009.
TruthorFiction.com reported on The ACLU's opposition to US Marines
praying in 2003 and that one is also
here for our findings.
The claim that Navy
Chaplains not being permitted to pray in the name of Jesus has nothing
to do with the ACLU but rather a story of a former U.S. Navy Chaplain
who says he was fired for praying in the name of Jesus.
In August 15, 2006,
World Net Daily reported that an Evangelical Episcopal Church priest who
served as a Navy Chaplain, Lt. Gordon Klingenschmitt was charged "with
refusing to follow an order and wearing his uniform at a March 30 event
in Washington, D.C., where he prayed on the steps of the White House."
Gordon argued that he was being punished for praying "in Jesus name"
during the event along with former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore in
March of that year. Gordon is noted for staging an 18-day hunger
strike to protest a new prayer policy authorizing only generic prayers.
The ACLU does not
oppose religion or prayer and according to their website, "The
ACLU believes in the right of each and every American to practice his or
her own religion, or no religion at all, is among the most fundamental
of the freedoms guaranteed by the Bill of Rights. The ACLU works to
ensure religious liberty is protected by keeping the government out of
the realm of all religions."