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Civil Liberties

Multi-State Privacy Push Paves the Way for National Reform

Rachel Levinson-Waldman | Posted 01.20.2016 | Politics
Rachel Levinson-Waldman

The proposed laws focus on a range of issues, such as email and other electronic communications, employees' use of social media, cell phone trackers and license plate readers. Should these measures pass, it would send a strong signal to other states and Congress that Americans remain concerned about protecting their privacy.

True Americans

Kermit Roosevelt | Posted 01.23.2016 | Politics
Kermit Roosevelt

I studied the World War II program in the course of writing a novel about it. I learned how our great country lost its way, and about the psychological and political dynamics that make similar things happen over and over again.

The Logic of the Police State

Matthew Harwood | Posted 12.20.2015 | Politics
Matthew Harwood

What this "debate" has revealed, in fact, is a mainstream policing mindset ready to manufacture fear without evidence and promote the belief that American civil rights and liberties are actually an impediment to public safety.

Resist the "Trumpification" of the Internet

Ryan Hagemann | Posted 12.16.2015 | Politics
Ryan Hagemann

Well it finally happened. Donald Trump, not content with merely mocking reporters, calling for the deportation of Muslim-Americans, and erecting walls along the American border, has a new target in his crosshairs: the Internet.

Congress Ties Controversial Cybersecurity Bill To Key Spending Package

The Huffington Post | Alexander Howard | Posted 12.16.2015 | Technology

Buried deep within a 2,009-page congressional document is a cybersecurity bill that could have a major impact on your personal data. Sharp-eyed report...

The War at Home: Four Ways Good Faith Can Help Defeat ISIS

David Briggs | Posted 12.15.2015 | Religion
David Briggs

What much research proposes, and history also teaches, is that democracy flourishes when we start with the idea that all people are created equal, and endowed with certain inalienable rights.

How to Stand up for Your Muslim Friends

Manal Omar | Posted 12.10.2015 | Politics
Manal Omar

I am scared here at home. I have been on the receiving end of hateful glares, shoving on the sidewalks, and hateful phrases yelled at me. The fear I face here at home has made me decide not to ride the metro since the Paris attacks. I find myself using my hostile environment training for Baghdad and Benghazi here at home.

Donald Trump's Call To Ban Muslims Reflects America's Worrisome Past

Michele Goodwin | Posted 12.09.2015 | Politics
Michele Goodwin

Donald Trump's political rhetoric has historical resonance--it exposes how our worst fears and anxieties can lead to shameful conduct that not only imposes real costs on "outsiders," but also the American public.

Rubio Questions Legitimacy Of Terror Watch Lists

The Huffington Post | Shahien Nasiripour | Posted 12.06.2015 | Politics

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We Must Strive Towards Justice

Hector Villagra | Posted 12.04.2015 | Politics
Hector Villagra

My friends, the answer is clear. We cannot remain coldly silent and ignore what's happening. We all bear responsibility for what the police do. Our society gives police tremendous power over people's lives. They act in our name. When they kill, they act in our name.

Judge Posner to Speech-Squelching Sheriff: Cease and Desist

Evan Bernick | Posted 12.01.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

It's well known that the First Amendment prohibits government officials from acting as censors. So it should surprise no one that officials seeking to suppress speech of which they disapprove choose their words carefully.

France's War Rhetoric: The Rise of the Exterminators

Pierre Guerlain | Posted 11.29.2015 | World
Pierre Guerlain

The dirty war in Algeria, which pitted Islamists against the army, haunts many people who fled to France to escape the terror and murder meted out by the FIS (Islamist front). Others who fled Iran may be equally vehement. French people who should remember the murderous consequences of such rhetoric during the Algerian war of independence still favor it today.

Almost a Century Ago, Another Democratic Socialist Ran for President of the United States -- From His Prison Cell

Lawrence Wittner | Posted 11.23.2015 | Politics
Lawrence Wittner

In the early twentieth century, roughly a century before Bernie Sanders's long-shot run for the White House, another prominent democratic socialist, Eugene V. Debs, waged his own campaigns for the presidency.

Librarians Don't Like CISA

Christian Zabriskie | Posted 10.29.2015 | Politics
Christian Zabriskie

Librarians care an awful lot about your privacy. It's not really all that surprising, we have always been the trusted keepers of secrets, the nonjudgemental face at the reference desk.

Police Can't Predict the Future. Fortunately, They Don't Have to.

David M. Kennedy | Posted 10.29.2015 | Politics
David M. Kennedy

Can computers, fancy mathematics, and big data predict crime, even predict who will commit murder? Attention to factors like previous arrests and unemployment processed through sophisticated software has allowed police to target those at highest risk.

War on Islam Comes to Our Backyards

Manal Omar | Posted 10.09.2015 | Religion
Manal Omar

The escalation of tension among the American-Muslim community is an opportunity for us to once more examine the role of religion in society from a multi-disciplinary lens. It is an opportunity to reject the simplistic and sensational narrative that is leading to a cycle of violence.

California Can Teach The Rest Of Us An Important Lesson In Digital Privacy

The Huffington Post | Alexander Howard | Posted 10.09.2015 | Technology

California Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday signed the nation's strongest digital privacy law yet, codifying a simple principle: All of our ...

Debtors Prisons: How Counties Use Poor People to Fund Criminal Justice

ACLU of Washington | Posted 10.06.2015 | Politics
ACLU of Washington

After struggling with addiction and mental illness, Jayne Fuentes served her time, found a job and got her life back on track. She's been sober and crime-free for three years, but one thing still dogs her: fear of being jailed or forced to do physical labor because she can't afford to pay the government.

The No-Fly Follies

Rebecca Gordon | Posted 09.20.2015 | Politics
Rebecca Gordon

At the check-in line at San Francisco International Airport, we handed over our driver's licenses and waited for the airline ticket agent to find our flight and reservation. Suddenly, she got a funny look on her face. "There's something wrong with the computer," she said. "I need to talk to my supervisor."

Signs Point to More Freedom: How a Recent Supreme Court Decision Strengthens the First Amendment

Evan Bernick | Posted 08.20.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Those who believe, with Abrams, that "the First Amendment is about liberty" and that "we all lose by reading it narrowly" should welcome the ruling in Reed and pay no heed to Post's parade of horribles.

Rand Paul, Libertarian?

Anthony D. Romero | Posted 07.31.2015 | Politics
Anthony D. Romero

Sen. Rand Paul has made safeguarding civil liberties a cornerstone of his presidential campaign, and he hasn't been afraid to take on his own party in that fight. But when it comes to the question of abortion, Rand Paul believes government should be making our most intimate decisions for us.

CISA: The Dirty Deal Between Google and the NSA That No One Is Talking About

Evan Greer | Posted 07.30.2015 | Politics
Evan Greer

One of the things that civil liberties activists like to lament about is that the general public seems to care more about Google and Facebook using their personal data to target advertising than the government using it to target drone strikes.

An Open Letter to the DA Who Thinks I Must Be in ISIS Because I Carry Around Cash

Josh Axelrad | Posted 07.30.2015 | Politics
Josh Axelrad

Dear Scott Rowland, I had $10K, little more, in the car when I heard you on All Things Considered. You were defending civil asset forfeiture. Your defense, I had to notice, backfired. You didn't defend forfeiture at all. But your comments provided a rich illustration of why forfeiture must be abolished.

Meeting First Amendment Standards: In 2015, More Universities Are Making the Grade

Azhar Majeed | Posted 07.30.2015 | College
Azhar Majeed

Yet year after year, my organization, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), finds that the vast majority of colleges and universities -- both public and private -- maintain speech codes that severely restrict or overly regulate the expression of students and professors.

Just The Latest Attack On Planned Parenthood And The Women It Serves

Sen. Barbara Boxer | Posted 07.30.2015 | Politics
Sen. Barbara Boxer

Let's be clear: this attack on women's health is the opposite of liberty. Republicans are using women's health and women's lives as a political football - and that is wrong.