If you think you or your kids are addicted to social media, just take a look at the Department of Homeland Security.
They just can’t get enough of the stuff.
They’ve been monitoring the social media of dissidents (for example, Black Lives Matter) on the sly for years, but they are upfront about how they comb through social media for information about immigrants.
DHS’ thirst for social media has been in the news recently because the department issued two notices about their habit in the Federal Register. First, DHS announced it wants to include the info they find on social media in an immigrant’s file, even after they become green card holders or even U.S. citizens. And, DHS wants that data to be exempt from Privacy Act Protections (thereby preventing a person from finding out what information about them — accurate or not — DHS is keeping on file).
And, DHS can share that information with all levels of government, and with private entities and even foreign governments.
The new policies are slated to take effect at the end of October, but public comments are now being accepted, and I encourage you to take a moment right now to voice your concern. By clicking on the links below, you will be taken to the official government website to comment on regulations. Your comment can be brief, but please do weigh in.
Please come right back here after you submit your comment, and tell DHS not to hide what they are collecting by exempting the data from Privacy Act protections.
Thanks for taking action, we understand that submitting comments is more involved than the usual email or petition action we invite you to take.
Stay Loud, Stay Strong,
Defending Rights & Dissent, Center for Constitutional Rights Release First Comprehensive Report on Ag-Gag Laws
This landmark report discusses ag-gag laws in historical and political context, catalogues an earlier wave of ag-gag legislation, examines each recent law in detail, explores constitutional concerns and current lawsuits, and documents several successful campaigns to defeat ag-gag legislation.
We Don’t Like When Our Own Government Spies On Us, Why Would We Be Okay With Other Governments Doing It?
The Department of Justice has proposed draft legislation that would grant foreign governments easy access to electronic communications data, like emails, held in the United States.
The letter states, “We are dismayed that, after years of advocacy and dialogue, we are once again returning to an era in which federal agencies will operate these programs virtually unchecked.”
We defeated an amendment that took the unprecedented step of singling out an individual non-profit organization for legislative exclusion from participation in programming with US foreign assistance funds when there is no legal basis for the exclusion.
Defending Rights & Dissent expresses its deep sense of dismay that a DC Superior Court Judge has refused to dismiss charges against participants in a counter-inauguration protest. The currently nearly 200 defendants face multiple felony charges carrying up to decades in prison for participating in a First Amendment protected assembly.
Is the Fourth Amendment, drafted in the 18th century, able to deal effectively with digital age technologies? That is the question being asked in a number of a number of legal cases, in a number of different contexts, and with surprising results.
Providing law enforcement with military-grade equipment produces a dangerous, warrior mentality that could encourage more aggressive policing. Military equipment is designed to be used against an enemy, so if local police are given access to weapons being used by soldiers fighting ISIS in Afghanistan, it’s not that far a of logical jump to see an environment where unarmed public demonstrators are perceived as a threat.
CVE programs combine profiling, surveillance, censorship, and even thought control. They aren’t the right tool to help us fight white supremacy, because they have been, and will continue to be, used to enforce institutional white supremacy.
As organization dedicated both to police accountability and to defending political dissent, we are deeply disturbed by both the acquittal of the former police officer who killed Anthony Lamar Smith and police use of force against the protests in response to this acquittal.