Spying, Secrecy & Suppression
There is an assault on civil liberties and fundamental rights. State spying, secrecy and suppression have vastly increased. 9/11 is the pretext for surveillance that never stops giving. Both Democrats and Republicans have greatly expanded the powers of the multiple government agencies who watch and monitor us. What is called oversight is a joke. We would do well to recall Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas’s ringing dissent in his 1972 opinion Laird v. Tatum. This is what he said: “The Constitution was designed to keep government off the backs of the people. The Bill of Rights was added to keep the precincts of belief and expression, of the press, of political and social activities free from surveillance. The Bill of Rights was designed to keep agents of government and official eavesdroppers away from assemblies of people.”
Nadine Strossen is professor of law at New York Law School. She has written, lectured and practiced extensively in the areas of civil liberties, constitutional law and human rights. She was elected President of the American Civil Liberties Union in 1991. She is the first woman and youngest person to serve as head of the ACLU.