Community Resolution for Weston, MA
2004 ANNUAL TOWN MEETING
Make a Difference
Your support helps the ACLU stand up for human rights and defend civil liberties.
ARTICLE 36: CITIZENS' PETITION: RESOLUTION REGARDING THE PATRIOT ACT
WESTON, MASSACHUSETTS CITIZENS' PETITION RE THE U.S.A. PATRIOT ACT
Whereas, the Town of Weston recognizes and upholds all the rights and privileges secured by the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, which guarantees all citizens and non-citizens the following rights:
Freedom of speech, assembly and privacy;
The rights to counsel and due process in judicial proceedings, and
Protection from unreasonable searches and seizures.
Whereas, we believe these liberties are precious and are now threatened by the U.S.A. Patriot Act, which:
Greatly expands the government's ability to conduct secret searches;
Severely reduces judicial supervision of telephone and internet surveillance;
Gives the Attorney General and the Secretary of State the power to designate domestic groups as ""terrorist groups;""
Grants the FBI broad access to sensitive medical, mental health, financial about individuals without a court order or evidence of a crime;
Allows the Attorney General to subject non-citizens to indefinite detention or have not committed a crime.
Whereas, the citizens of Weston have decried the U.S.A. Patriot Act and the associated orders and rules of the executive branch of the U.S. government as unnecessary to the prosecution of, and protection from, terrorism.
Therefore, be it resolved that:
1. The Town of Weston affirms the civil rights guaranteed to all of its residents, U.S. citizens and citizens of other countries alike, in accordance with the Bill or Rights and the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
2. The Town of Weston urges U.S. Congregational Representatives and Senators to monitor the implementation of the U.S.A. Patriot Act and related acts and orders, and actively work for the repeal of those portions that violate fundamental rights and liberties guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
3. The Selectmen of the Town of Weston shall send copies of this resolution to the President of the United States, the U. S. Attorney General, the Secretary of State, members of the Massachusetts Congressional delegation, our representatives in the Massachusetts House and Senate, and to the Governor and Attorney General of Massachusetts.
Article 36 Explanation (Provided by proponents): With great haste and secrecy, and in the name of the ""war on terrorism"", the federal government passed legislation with sweeping new powers that undermine the Bill of Rights without demonstrating that these powers are necessary to keep us safe. This 342 page law was passed on October 26, 2001 by the U.S. Congress and signed by the President without any debate by members of Congress.
This Article seeks to have Congress review and redress those provisions of the U.S.A. Patriot Act and related acts and orders which threaten our civil rights and liberties pursuant to the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 14th Amendments of the U.S. Constitution.