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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Day cares can’t mandate diversity

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It is ridiculous that a bossy Colorado state agency proposed forcing day care centers to post two or more visual displays "presenting diversity in a positive way" and to provide dolls from three different races ("Colo. proposal would impose parameters on day care centers," Web, Wednesday).

The diversity display requirement is a flagrant violation of the First Amendment. The Supreme Court's 1995 decision in the Hurley case ruled out forcing people to celebrate diversity. It ruled that a parade could not be ordered to include a homosexual-pride contingent, since compelled speech violates free speech.

Governments cannot condition licenses for day-care centers or other businesses on their giving up their free speech rights. That is forbidden by federal court rulings such as Carepartners LLP v. Lashway (2008). People cannot be punished even for criticizing "diversity." Even heated criticism of affirmative action is protected by court rulings such as Department of Corrections v. State Personnel Board (1997).

HANS BADER

Senior attorney

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Washington

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