The Dissent Newswire

May 18, 2011

Making the PATRIOT Act permanent

Last week, the House Judiciary Committee voted 22-13 in favor of a bill extending two expiring provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act for six years—and making another permanent. Now is a crucial time in the legislative process, and we must
May 11, 2011

Will the real patriots please stand up?

Over the past several weeks, we’ve encouraged grassroots constitutionalists across the partisan spectrum to stand up, reach out, and meet with your elected representatives to exhort them to insist on dramatic changes to the USA PATRIOT Act to restore civil liberties. This
May 7, 2011

New “war footing” for domestic intelligence

Last week’s defeat of Osama bin Laden could suggest that our nation’s extraordinary surveillance and domestic security policies over the past decade are due for reevaluation and correction to ensure compliance with our constitutional values. Then again, maybe not. According
May 4, 2011

BORDC receives FBI letter admitting violations

The Bill of Rights Defense Committee (BORDC) has received a letter from the FBI admitting to widespread violations of the law. The letter was released in response to a lawsuit filed in federal district court in the District of Columbia
April 16, 2011

UnPATRIOTic: Why our government won’t protect our rights—and what we can do about it

This spring, as he did last year amid conspicuously little fanfare, President Obama stands ready to sign into law a bill reauthorizing portions of the PATRIOT Act. His reversal since the 2008 campaign is stunning, suggesting a deeper structural problem
April 11, 2011

End PATRIOT Act abuses. Stand for JUSTICE.

It’s been nearly a decade since the PATRIOT Act became law in America. It’s time to put an end to the ongoing abuses under its draconian powers. Government surveillance has invaded the privacy of innocent Americans en masse. The FBI
April 5, 2011

Tell President Obama: Veto the PATRIOT Act!

On the anniversary of the first veto in US history—George Washington’s veto 219 years ago today—BORDC and a coalition of other civil liberties groups are calling on President Barack Obama to exercise his veto power on any bill reauthorizing the
April 1, 2011

A Decade in Crisis

A few weeks ago, I wrote A Decade in Crisis = The Opportunity of a Generation, a guest blog post for SAALT (South Asian Americans Leading Together) reflecting on the ten year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The past decade has
March 28, 2011

Expectation of privacy and free speech breached in Wisconsin

When the United States Constitution was written over two hundred years ago, the founders of our country did not have the technology we have today, but they did have the ideology of a right to privacy; they had the expectation
March 21, 2011

Former FBI and CIA officials share BORDC’s concerns

Last Friday, March 18, the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University hosted a Symposium on Domestic Intelligence.  The symposium was fascinating, and featured three panels (on the last of which I spoke—video below) in addition to a series of
March 12, 2011

America deserves better than McCarthy-style witch hunts

Ahead of Rep. Peter King’s divisive and Islamophobic hearings in the House Homeland Security Committee this week, I spoke at a press conference to denounce the dangerous, untrue, and un-American canard that Muslim Americans have been unwilling to cooperate with federal
February 21, 2011

Wisconsin takes the floor!

Taking a cue from the recent Middle East movement, the people of Wisconsin’s capital now add themselves to the ever growing list of peaceful protesters taking a stand for their rights. Wisconsin is in the midst of heavy budget cuts
February 14, 2011

PATRIOT? Demand JUSTICE instead!

Last Tuesday’s surprise revolt in the House may have derailed fast-track reauthorization of the PATRIOT Act, but Congress is back at it again this week. Today, the House will vote again on whether to reauthorize unchecked and unaccountable government surveillance,
February 11, 2011

Demand JUSTICE, not the PATRIOT Act

Ten years after passing the USA PATRIOT Act, Congress is again debating this enormous expansion of government power. With three provisions set to expire at the end of this month, and Tuesday’s revolt in the House against fast-track reauthorization, there has
February 9, 2011

Bipartisan resistance stops PATRIOT Act in the House

This evening, under special rules requiring a 2/3 majority to pass a bill without allowing amendments, the House majority fell seven votes short of reauthorizing the PATRIOT Act. In what The Washington Post called “a vote that served as the first small
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