Blog of Rights

Devon
Chaffee
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Dear TSA, My Football Preferences and Vacation Plans are None of your Business: A First-Hand Experience With the TSA’s “Chat-Downs”

Dear TSA, My Football Preferences and Vacation Plans are None of your Business: A First-Hand Experience With the TSA’s “Chat-Downs”

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:51pm
I was scheduled to return from my summer vacation at 6 a.m. Sunday morning flying out of Vermont’s Burlington International Airport in a state most often thought to be ahead of the civil liberties curve. If you’ve ever had a crack-of-dawn flight, you can relate to my blurry eyed exhaustion after waking up at 3:30 a.m. to make it to the airport with enough time for what we now consider to be the standard, if annoying, airport security rigmarole. I expected to have to strip off my belt and sweatshirt, take off my shoes, show my ID, and be subjected to a naked body scan or all-too-personal pat down.  What I didn’t expect was a full-on TSA interrogation about my summer vacation before I even reached the identification checkpoint.
Bill to Stop Modern Day Slavery under Government Contracts

Bill to Stop Modern Day Slavery under Government Contracts

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:44pm

Last month the ACLU released a joint report with Yale Law School, Victims of Complacency, that documents the ongoing trafficking, forced labor and abuse of foreign workers hired through U.S. government contracts to work in support of U.S. military…

FBI Interrogation Primer Encourages Prisoner Isolation

FBI Interrogation Primer Encourages Prisoner Isolation

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:31am

Today, the ACLU released a 2011 FBI “primer” on overseas interrogation that calls into question whether the FBI is adhering to its own policy prohibiting coercive techniques. The 2011 primer was obtained by the ACLU and colleague organizations…

Report from Guantánamo Hearings: When Due Process is a Matter of Life and Death

Report from Guantánamo Hearings: When Due Process is a Matter of Life and Death

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:39pm

After two lengthy days of arguments, the al-Nashiri case seems hardly closer to coming to trial. Defense counsel suggested the trial wouldn't even begin until 2015.

President Issues Executive Order to Stop Human Trafficking in Government Contracts

President Issues Executive Order to Stop Human Trafficking in Government Contracts

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:56pm

Today, President Barack Obama signed an executive order that will give better protections to vulnerable workers employed by government contractors. The order, announced on the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, lays out new requirements…

Congress: Stop Targeting American Muslims and Protect Muslim Service Members

Congress: Stop Targeting American Muslims and Protect Muslim Service Members

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 9:42am

Congress continues to target Muslims even though empirical studies show that violent threats cannot be identified by any religious, ideological, ethnic or racial profile.

A Hearing on a Hearing: Rep. Peter King Prioritizes Navel Gazing

A Hearing on a Hearing: Rep. Peter King Prioritizes Navel Gazing

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:12pm

Yesterday Peter King (R-NY), Chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, brought congressional navel gazing to a new level by holding a hearing on his past hearings that have singled out and perpetuated dangerous stereotypes about the American…

More Anti-Muslim Training Materials Uncovered

More Anti-Muslim Training Materials Uncovered

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 7:16pm

This morning, Danger Room’s Spencer Ackerman continued to shock readers by exposing some of the most vehemently anti-Muslim training documents used by the U.S. government that have come to light to date. (See our past analysis of biased FBI materials.)…

New Briefing Paper: Obama's Unfinished Business on Human Rights

New Briefing Paper: Obama's Unfinished Business on Human Rights

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:46pm

Today, the ACLU laid out concrete steps the Obama administration should take to live up to the human rights promises it made to the U.N. just over one year ago. The release of our new briefing paper coincides with the administration's announcement…

Commission Proposed to Police Ideas, Ignores Actual Violence

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:12pm

This morning 36 organizations sent a letter to Sen. Feinstein (D-Calif.) urging her to block a proposal to establish a commission on so-called "domestic radicalization." Instead of examining proven indicators of violent acts — a…

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