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Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Civil Liberties

What Do We Tell The Children About Their Country Now?

For the moment, I assured the children that Donald Trump, in his victory speech, promised to unite the country and be fair to everyone — to be nicer, in the vernacular of elementary school.

November 9, 2016
A model of a military drone is seen in front of an U.S. flag as protesters rally against climate change, ahead of the Democratic National Convention, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., July 24, 2016. REUTERS/Dominick Reuter

Why Baltimore’s Covert Spy Plane Program Is A Major Battleground For Privacy And Free Speech

A hidden camera in the sky watches people’s movements on the ground; ex-military private contractors control the cameras and run the operation to avoid government oversight. In the background, billionaire funders salivate at the possibility of plush government contracts. In the city of Baltimore, this dystopian scenario is already real life.

September 1, 2016

When Expedience Feels Like Wisdom

“Let’s stop worrying about people’s rights.” Sadly there are dozens of junctures in American history from which that shameful quote might spring. But it was four days ago.

November 22, 2015

The Paris Attacks And What Must Change

The choice of soft targets was the “game changer,” and not just for the French. American law enforcement has taken note. And so should ordinary Americans.

November 17, 2015

Can America Stand Rand? Cranking Up His ‘Libertarian’ Campaign

Rand Paul’s flat tax, a “new idea” from 1983, would worsen inequality, raising the burden on the poor and middle class while benefiting the very rich.

April 7, 2015
Mike Pence, Civil Liberties, Religion, Discrmination, Gay Rights, GOP, Indiana, Hoosier, RFRA

Indiana’s Fix To ‘Religious Freedom’ Law Draws Critics On Both Sides

“Critics of the law immediately said the changes do not go far enough in protecting against discrimination, while proponents said that Indianans’ religious liberties are still threatened.”

April 2, 2015
Tupelo, Mississippi, South, Gay Rights, South, Progress, National News, Civil Liberties

Gay Rights Supporters Gird For Fight In Mississippi Beyond Marriage

Despite some social and legislative progress to “pry open the Southern closet,” some Tupelo residents want to criminalize homosexuality.

April 1, 2015
Mike Pence, Civil Liberties, Religion, Discrmination, Gay Rights, GOP, Indiana, Hoosier, RFRA

Indiana Governor Mike Pence Calls For Legislative Fix For Religious Freedom Law

Governor Mike Pence, who believes in the Golden Rule, clarifies that Indiana’s new religion law does not discriminate against him as it does against gays and lesbians.

March 31, 2015
Free Speech, First Amendment, Civil Liberties, National News, SAE, Hate Speech, Racism, Media

Oklahoma Frat Fallout: Some Speech Protected, Some Punished

Free to offend: Strong support for First Amendment rights makes it difficult to sue for hateful speech.

March 23, 2015
Education, Pre-K, de Blasio, New York City, Religion, Religious Freedom, Civil Liberties, Politics

Secular de Blasio Sows Confusion As New York Pre-K Allows Prayer

For Mayor de Blasio, inclusivity in public schools wins favor with religious groups and garners a faithful voter base, but antagonizes secular progressives as a result.

March 19, 2015

Quarantining Health Workers Could Worsen Ebola Epidemic, Officials Say

Controversy about the proper way to handle possible Ebola patients sparks after a New Jersey nurse is quarantined in a “tent structure”.

October 27, 2014

Media, ACLU Sue Oklahoma Over Right To Watch Executions

By Matt Pearce, Los Angeles Times Oklahoma prison officials violated the First Amendment when they closed the blinds to witnesses during a botched execution in April, media and civil liberties advocates allege in a federal lawsuit filed Monday. The American Civil Liberties Union and its Oklahoma affiliate teamed up with the Guardian U.S. and the […]

August 25, 2014

Weekend Reader: ‘The Naked Society’

Today the Weekend Reader brings you The Naked Society, by journalist and author Vance Packard. This 1964 classic was certainly far ahead of its time, discussing the dangers of new technology infringing upon our right to privacy. While worrisome then — with new developments in surveillance methods during the 1960s — it is far more salient today. The […]

May 24, 2014

NSA Snooping Illegal, Violates Privacy: U.S. Watchdog

Washington (AFP) – The bulk telephone data collection by a U.S. intelligence agency is a massive violation of civil liberties and should be shut down, a government advisory panel said Thursday. A report by the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, a panel created on the recommendation of the 9/11 Commission, concluded the National Security […]

January 23, 2014

Mixed Feelings: Americans Willing To Give Up Freedoms For Terror Fight But Want Civil Liberties Protected

WASHINGTON (AP) — Surveillance cameras in public places? Sure. Body scans at airports? Maybe. Snooping in personal email? Not so fast. The same Americans who are increasingly splashing their personal lives across Facebook and Twitter trace a meandering path when asked where the government should draw the line between protecting civil liberties and pursuing terrorism. […]

September 6, 2011