Patriot Act and Civil LIberties

Charlene Thomas

Civil Liberties

  1. The limitless power granted to the Patriot Act allows it to freely and continuously impede on the rights of American citizens.
    1. The Patriot Act is a blatant violation of Constitution and Civil Liberties (Sadeghi, 2003)
    2. By enacting the Patriot Act the White House willingly sacrificed citizen’s rights such as due process in the name of “national security”
    3. The Bush Administration pushed fiercely for Congress to approve the Patriot Act, and did not give our representatives enough time to thoroughly understand the 342 page legistation (Sadeghi, 2003).
    4. Congress and the public have yet to receive the full story about how the Patriot Act is being used to collect information on Americans (ALCU, 2010).
    5. Our elected representatives have done little to revise or reverse the Patriot Act.
      1. Due to terrorist attacks on 9/11, Congress was bullied by the Bush Administration to revise and approve a law enforcement “wish list” for changes in surveillance laws (ACLU, 2010).
      2. The Senate version of the Patriot Act, which closely resembled the legislation requested by Attorney General John Ashcroft, was sent straight to the floor with no discussion, debate, or hearings (ALCU, 2010). 
      3. The way the law currently stands, any and every American citizen is subject to having their phones tapped, emails and text messages scanned, and could face indefinate detainment.
      4. The present system should be changed
      5. Solutions:
        1. Possible solutions: Revise sections of the Patriot Act to ensure that American’s civil liberties are upheld, not violated. 
        2. Best solution: Senate and the elected President work together to ensure that the Patriot Act protects the lives and liberties of American citizens rather than violating our Constitutional rights.
        3. Consequences:
          1. Good outcomes: Revising the Patriot Act to protect our civil liberties will ensure that the American population does not feel as if though the proverbial “Big Brother” is watching their every move.
          2. Bad outcomes: Allowing the government is violate our constitutional rights will raze the very foundation this country was built upon.

 

References

Sadeghi, Y. (2003). US patriot act violates our civil liberties. Yale Daily News. Retrieved Oct. 27, 2013. Retrieved from http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2003/10/07/usa-patriot-act-violates-our-civil-liberties/

Time to rein in the surveillance state. (n.d). American Civil Liberties Union. Retrieved Oct. 10, 2013. Retrieved from https://www.aclu.org/time-rein-surveillance-state-0

 

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