Update: Sultaana Freeman License Photo Case in Florida

May 27, 2003

Source: American Civil Liberties Union


On May 27, 2003 American Civil Liberties Union reported that "saying the government's crackdown on rights in the wake of 9/11 does not justify religious scapegoating of Muslims, the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida today asked a circuit court judge here to reinstate the driving privileges of a Muslim homemaker whose license was revoked after she declined on religious grounds to remove her face veil for a driver's license photo... 'We live in a religiously diverse country where everyone is supposed to have the right to practice and worship as they choose,' said Randall Marshall, Legal Director of the ACLU of Florida. 'Yet, here we have a case where the government is questioning one woman's sincerely held religious beliefs and then forcing her to compromise them under the false pretext of national security...' In January 2002, shortly after Freeman's license was suspended, the ACLU of Florida filed a lawsuit on her behalf, citing three separate cases in Colorado, Indiana and Nebraska in which the courts ruled that individuals with certain clearly held religious beliefs have a right to obtain licenses without photographs. Those cases involved Christians who believe that the Second Commandment prohibits them from having their photographs taken."