Blog of Rights

Banned From America For Political Views? (UPDATED)

Banned From America For Political Views? (UPDATED)

By Nusrat Choudhury, Staff Attorney, ACLU Racial Justice Program at 10:09am
UPDATE (11/19/2013): Following a delay of more than year and a half, the State Department last week finally granted Kerim Yildiz, a U.K. citizen and advocate for Kurdish human rights, a visa to travel to the United States.  The blog post below, from last month, details Yildiz's problem getting a visa. (More info here from Inside Higher Education, which ran a story about Yildiz.)
Freezing the Press

Freezing the Press

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:57pm

It’s been half a year since the Associated Press revealed a subpoena sweeping up phone metadata records for more than 20 of its lines, in offices where more than 100 reporters work, covering tens of thousands of newsgathering calls.

Members…

What Could Justify Using a Taser on an 8-Year-Old Girl?

What Could Justify Using a Taser on an 8-Year-Old Girl?

By Heather Smith, Communications Director, ACLU of South Dakota & Sarah Solon, Communications Strategist, ACLU at 12:34pm

Justified.

That’s how the Pierre Police Department described an incident several days ago where an officer fired his Taser at an 8-year-old girl after receiving a report that she had stabbed herself in the leg and appeared suicidal.

When…

The Global Suppression of Protest

The Global Suppression of Protest

This week the International Network of Civil Liberties Organizations released a report about the crackdown on peaceful protests in democracies around the world – the tactics include excessive (sometimes deadly) police force and the criminalization…

Accountability vs. Privacy: The ACLU’s Recommendations on Police Body Cameras

Accountability vs. Privacy: The ACLU’s Recommendations on Police Body Cameras

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:00am

Today we’re releasing our policy recommendations on police “body cameras” (also called “on-officer recording systems” or “cop cams”), small cameras that clip on to an officer’s uniform and record audio and video of the officer’s interactions…

The Ministry of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Truth

The Ministry of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Truth

By Rita Cant, Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:16am

The frenzy over "Operation Fast and Furious" has been hard to avoid. It's been the subject of a massive DOJ report, Congressional hearings, contempt votes, subpoena fights in federal court, and relentless media scrutiny. But if there's one telling…

Axe Wasteful and Abusive FBI Programs

Axe Wasteful and Abusive FBI Programs

By Mike German, Senior Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:04pm

According to the Washington Post, new FBI Director James Comey is struggling with an FBI budget shortfall as a result of the sequester (even though the FBI budget more than doubled since 2001). Since we just finished Unleashed and Unaccountable, a…

Banned Books Week: The Struggle Against Censorship Continues

Banned Books Week: The Struggle Against Censorship Continues

By Brian Hauss, Legal Fellow, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 11:32am

This week marks the 31st annual "Banned Books Week," the American Library Association's celebration of the freedom to read...

Naked Statue Reveals One Thing: Facebook Censorship Needs Better Appeals Process

Naked Statue Reveals One Thing: Facebook Censorship Needs Better Appeals Process

By Lee Rowland, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 10:07am

We at the ACLU were reassured of one thing this past weekend: Facebook’s chest-recognition detectors are fully operational...

Burying the Needle

Burying the Needle

By Matthew Harwood, Media Strategist, ACLU at 2:54pm

Back in 2007, Reps. Brad Miller (D-N.C.) and James Sensenbrenner (R-Wisc.) sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Congress's watchdog over the federal government. As the two top members of the Subcommittee on Investigations and…