Transparency and Acountability

June 18, 2018

Federal and State Bills Feed Dangerous Myth of a “War on Police”

Both major parties are supporting legislation that breathes life into the misguided belief that police are under attack, and that protesters or criticism of aggressive policing put police officers’ lives in danger. 
June 7, 2018
j edgar hoover FBI Building

FBI, Jeff Sessions, Used Misleading Statistics to Drum Up Fear About Encryption

Defending Rights and Dissent has joined a coalition of 20 other civil liberties organizations in demanding that the Justice Department Inspector General review how the incorrect figure of 7,800 unlockable devices originally came to be. The coalition of groups is also pushing for an investigation into why Justice Department officials and Attorney General Jeff Sessions continued to cite this statistic even after it was discovered that the FBI had made an error in their calculations.
May 16, 2018
four surveillance camera to see all main points of the great metropolis

There Are Just Too Many Unknown Unknowns When it Comes to Local Police Surveillance. But Activists In Oakland are Changing That

Orwell's dystopic vision of a society where cameras and computers spy on every person's movements may be upon us, but even his prescient imagination did not envision the rise of non-disclosure agreements.
April 10, 2018
Whistle On American Flag

End Espionage Act Prosecutions of Whistleblowers

Whistleblowers and government transparency join Defending Rights & Dissent in calling for an end to Espionage Act abuse.
March 27, 2018
US Capitol Dome. Blue night sky behind.

Take Action Against Haspel and Pompeo Nominations

Tell you senators that torture proponents--and torturers--should not be rewarded.
March 26, 2018

Freedom of Information Under Attack in Kentucky, Iowa and Washington

Actions by state legislatures to circumvent their state’s public records and public meeting laws demonstrate the sweeping efforts by legislative bodies to undermine democracy in their jurisdictions. 
March 23, 2018
Jeff Sessions with a wierd smile

CLOUD Act Makes It Easier for Foreign Governments to Spy in the US

The CLOUD Act would require that foreign governments get their requests for an individual’s data approved by the executive branch instead of an independent U.S. judge,
March 13, 2018

Defending Rights & Dissent Opposes Trump’s Nominee Who Was Involved in Torture to Head CIA

Gina Haspel should be subject to a criminal investigation, not running the CIA. Defending Rights & Dissent adamantly opposes her nomination and calls upon the Senate to reject her.
February 5, 2018

Coalition to Congress: Uphold Section 504 of the National Security Act. In other words, don’t let intelligence agencies move money around behind Congress’ back.

A dozen civil liberties, open government, and accountability organizations joined Defending Rights & Dissent to protest a provision included in the Continuing Resolution Congress passed to end the government shutdown on January 22.
January 17, 2018

Right to Know, Freedom to Act: A FOIA Briefing for Activists, Citizen Journalists, and Other Troublemakers (Updated With Recording)

This introductory briefing will cover the basic mechanics of filing a FOIA request, how journalists, activists, or just everyday citizens can use FOIA, and the current landscape for FOIA policy under the Trump administration.
January 8, 2018

Victory for Journalists, Whistleblowers, and Activists As Key Provisions of Ag-Gag Law Found to Be Unconstitutional

In a victory for journalists, whistleblowers, and activists, on January 4, 2018 the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down key provisions of Idaho's ag-gag as unconstitutional. Defending Rights & Dissent has long asserted ag-gag laws are unconstitutional.
December 15, 2017

New Paper Sounds the Alarm on Trump Administration Attacks on Federal Data and Civil Rights

WASHINGTON – The federal government’s collection, reporting, and protection of accurate, comprehensive data is central to implementing, monitoring, and evaluating civil rights laws and policies. But the Trump administration is taking steps that undermine all of these pillars of data collection.
October 30, 2017
Sunset sky over the US Capitol building dome in Washington DC.

Defending Rights & Dissent Joins 65 Groups In Calling On Congress to Stand Up to Unconstitutional War in Yemen

While we take no position on what US foreign policy should be, we support Congressional efforts to reclaim their constitutional war powers that have for far too long been usurped by the executive branch.
October 30, 2017

DRAD, DC NLG FOIA Request Uncovers That DC Police Spent Over $300,000 in Weapons, Ammunition to Use against Inauguration Day Protesters

New, previously undisclosed records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request by the DC Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild (DC NLG) and Defending Rights & Dissent (DRAD) details the types, quantities, manufacturers and costs of munitions used against protesters on Inauguration Day, January 20, 2017.
October 27, 2017

Statement on The Withholding of JFK Assassination Files

Regardless of what one thinks of the explanations and counter-explanations proffered over the decades about the JFK assassination, attempts to foil government transparency are contemptible.