Blog of Rights

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

By Alex Stamm, ACLU Center for Justice at 5:17pm
Today, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world. With over 2.3 million men and women living behind bars, our imprisonment rate is the highest it's ever been in U.S. history. And yet, our criminal justice system has failed on every count: public safety, fairness and cost-effectiveness. Across the country, the criminal justice reform conversation is heating up. Each week, we feature some of the most exciting and relevant news in overincarceration discourse that we've spotted from the previous week. Check back weekly for our top picks.
We Know That Stop-and-Frisk is All Kinds of Horrible: So Why Is it Expanding Nationwide?

We Know That Stop-and-Frisk is All Kinds of Horrible: So Why Is it Expanding Nationwide?

By Robert Hunter, Legal Assistant, ACLU, Racial Justice Program at 3:51pm

I was going to the store for my mother. And then when I came out the building I see my uncle and he's coming from the way I'm going and we walk back to the store...

The FBI’s Trojan Horse?

The FBI’s Trojan Horse?

By Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project at 3:21pm

Over the past few decades, a paradigm shift has occurred within policing. Known generally as community policing, the basic idea is that state and local law enforcement officers should integrate themselves into the communities they serve.

The…

Dragneting the Modern Media

Dragneting the Modern Media

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:40pm

We're used to talking about press freedoms in the context of the First Amendment: "Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom . . . of the press." But, especially in light of the ACLU's recent FBI report, Unleashed and Unaccountable, we…

10-Hour SWAT Raid of Organic Farm? Just Another Day in the War on Drugs.

10-Hour SWAT Raid of Organic Farm? Just Another Day in the War on Drugs.

By Kara Dansky, Senior Counsel, ACLU Center for Justice & Iman Boukadoum, ACLU at 2:07pm

A SWAT team spent ten hours raiding a small organic farm called The Garden of Eden in Arlington, Texas last month...

Is Your College Forcing Every Student to Urinate into a Cup?

Is Your College Forcing Every Student to Urinate into a Cup?

By Sarah Solon, Communications Strategist, ACLU & Jason Williamson at 11:59am

Imagine you get into the college of your dreams. You save up for the books you need and some coveted dorm decorations. The welcome wagon that greets you on campus? A suspicionless drug test and a $50 fee for the hassle and embarrassment of urinating…

The 1980s Called. They Want Their Mandatory Minimums Back.

The 1980s Called. They Want Their Mandatory Minimums Back.

By Jesselyn McCurdy, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Sarah Solon, Communications Strategist, ACLU at 2:27pm

Senator Leahy closed this morning’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on mandatory minimums by asking everyone in the room with a loved one serving a mandatory minimum to stand up. The whole audience stood.

This was a poignant display of…

The FBI’s Civil Rights Deficit

The FBI’s Civil Rights Deficit

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:52pm

The ACLU’s new report on the FBI, “Unleashed and Unaccountable,” details how the bureau’s investigative and intelligence collection authorities have changed since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and how these changes have opened…

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

By Alex Stamm, ACLU Center for Justice at 4:30pm

Today, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world. With over 2.3 million men and women living behind bars, our imprisonment rate is the highest it's ever been in U.S. history. And yet, our criminal justice system has failed…

Police Abuse of Power, Plain and Simple, in Etowah County, Alabama

Police Abuse of Power, Plain and Simple, in Etowah County, Alabama

By Brandon Buskey, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project & Ezekiel Edwards, Director, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project at 1:27pm

The Etowah County Sheriff's Office has a Fourth Amendment problem.

About once a month, a marked sheriff's car shows up, unannounced and after dark, outside a family's home in Alabama. Uniformed officers walk to the family's door, in plain sight…