Blog of Rights

Millions of Americans Are Cut Out of Our Democracy

Millions of Americans Are Cut Out of Our Democracy

By Julie Ebenstein, Staff Attorney, Voting Rights Project, ACLU at 2:53pm
On Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder expressed his support for restoring voting rights to citizens who have committed a felony, once they have served their prison term, completed parole or probation, and paid any restitution fines. While the ACLU believes rights should be restored automatically upon release from prison and being too poor to pay fines shouldn't leave you without a voice in our democracy, this is an important step in the right direction.
CIA Considers Releasing Its Torture Reports to ACLU

CIA Considers Releasing Its Torture Reports to ACLU

By Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project at 10:39am

There's good news in the ACLU's Freedom of Information Act lawsuit seeking greater transparency about the CIA's now-discontinued torture program: The CIA has agreed to review and consider for public release two of the three key reports we seek. The…

Texas Shouldn't – BUT JUST DID – Execute a Mexican National

Texas Shouldn't – BUT JUST DID – Execute a Mexican National

By Jamil Dakwar, Director, ACLU Human Rights Program at 3:52pm

Yesterday, at 9:32 p.m., the state of Texas executed Edgar Arias Tamayo, a 46-year-old Mexican national. Injecting lethal drugs into Mr. Tamayo's bloodstream was a clear violation of the United States' international obligations, and yet the state of…

Should Diplomats Always Get Immunity?

Should Diplomats Always Get Immunity?

By Steven M. Watt, Senior Staff Attorney, ACLU Human Rights Program at 4:18pm

A diplomatic furor has erupted between New Delhi and Washington over the recent arrest of an Indian consular official by U.S. authorities for alleged visa fraud and underpayment of a housekeeper who she had brought from India.

In the wake of…

America's Broken Guestworker Program Violates Human Rights

America's Broken Guestworker Program Violates Human Rights

By Chandra Bhatnagar, Senior Staff Attorney, ACLU Human Rights Program at 9:53am

Twenty-three years ago today, the United Nations adopted the landmark International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families. Subsequently, the General Assembly named December 18 "International…

Disappeared, Threatened with Torture, and Still Seeking Accountability

Disappeared, Threatened with Torture, and Still Seeking Accountability

By Jonathan Hafetz, Associate Professor of Law, Seton Hall University School of Law at 9:58am

A federal district court in Washington will hear arguments this afternoon in the ACLU's lawsuit on behalf of American citizen Amir Meshal. In 2007, FBI agents orchestrated Mr. Meshal's secret detention for four months in East Africa. During that time,…

How About We Celebrate Human Rights Every Day?

How About We Celebrate Human Rights Every Day?

By Anna Crosby, Human Rights Program, ACLU at 3:52pm

Henry Hill was 16 when he was charged for his involvement in a shooting that took place in a Michigan park. He is now 48 and has spent two-thirds of his life in a prison cell. Although in recent years the Supreme Court has struck down some laws…

How to Honor Mandela's Legacy

How to Honor Mandela's Legacy

By Jamil Dakwar, Director, ACLU Human Rights Program at 12:53pm

Today's worldwide celebrations of international Human Rights Day coincide with the commemoration of the life and legacy of the late Nelson Mandela – the freedom fighter, political prisoner, African National Congress leader, and first president of…

Mandela Faced the "Goliath" of Racial Discrimination

Mandela Faced the "Goliath" of Racial Discrimination

By Dennis Parker, Director, ACLU Racial Justice Program at 3:21pm

Nelson Mandela's life is a rebuke to oppression and to those who would respond with frustrated resignation or hatred. It is difficult to imagine a more unlikely success story against seemingly impossible odds. South Africa's system of apartheid seemed…

ACLU Sues CIA for Reports on Its Torture Program

ACLU Sues CIA for Reports on Its Torture Program

By Ashley Gorski, Nadine Strossen Fellow, National Security Project, ACLU at 3:48pm

The ACLU filed a lawsuit today under the Freedom of Information Act to compel the CIA to release two reports about its post-9/11 program of rendition, secret detention, and torture of detainees. This illegal program was devised and authorized by officials…