Blog of Rights

#DearMrPresident: Stop Profiling Us

The Perversity of Profiling

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Hina Shamsi, Director, ACLU National Security Project at 2:19pm
The Justice Department is considering revised racial profiling guidance that, if issued, could set back race relations and basic fairness in this country. We hope that it does not make that mistake.
How Will the Trillions in Federal Spending Affect Immigration?

How Will the Trillions in Federal Spending Affect Immigration?

By Georgeanne M. Usova, Washington Legislative Office at 4:14pm

Congress took an important step this week by passing an omnibus appropriations bill— one giant package to replace 12 spending bills that Congress passes in a normal year to keep the government running for the rest of FY 2014 and avoid another government…

Today We Honor Native Americans (And Not That Other Guy)

Today We Honor Native Americans (And Not That Other Guy)

By Courtney Bowie, Racial Justice Program at 12:43pm

Today, there is a federal holiday in honor of Christopher Columbus, but in South Dakota, citizens celebrate Native American Day "dedicated to the remembrance of the great Native American leaders who contributed so much to the history of [their] state."…

Crop of image by Arlo Bates via Flickr

When Big Data Becomes a Civil Rights Problem

By Chris Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 11:06am

My colleague Jay Stanley just wrote about an invasive new police tactic employed by the Chicago Police Department. Using software created by an engineer at the Illinois Institute of Technology, the city developed a “’heat list’ — an index of…

An Open Letter to the President on Race

An Open Letter to the President on Race

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:07am

Dear Mr. President,

Do you remember any of your campaign ads from your 2000 Congressional campaign? I'm thinking specifically of a radio ad touting your support for a bill that required police officers to log the ethnicity of every driver they…

Southwest Border Tour Excludes Border Communities

Southwest Border Tour Excludes Border Communities

By Mitra Ebadolahi, Border Litigation Staff Attorney, ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties & James Lyall, Border Litigation Staff Attorney, ACLU of Arizona at 4:54pm

Newly confirmed Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson wrapped up a two-day visit to the southwest border region last week, starting in McAllen, Texas, and ending in Tucson, Ariz. The stated purpose of the trip was to "tour border operations, receive…

The Fierce Urgency of Now: Honoring Dr. King by Working for Economic Justice

The Fierce Urgency of Now: Honoring Dr. King by Working for Economic Justice

By Rachel Goodman, Staff Attorney, ACLU Racial Justice Program at 11:55am

This week, as we celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, you’ll hear a lot, as we usually do, about the heroic work he did to move America past the era of state-enforced racial segregation.  Mainly, we remember Dr. King as a prophet of…

Data Suggests Boston Police Targeted Black & Working Class Areas For Surveillance

Data Suggests Boston Police Targeted Black & Working Class Areas For Surveillance

By Kade Crockford, Director, ACLU of Massachusetts Technology for Liberty Project at 5:38pm

Earlier this week the ACLU of Massachusetts called for a statewide moratorium on the use of license plate readers. We did so because a MuckRock/Boston Globe investigation revealed serious abuses by the Boston Police Department in its use of the controversial…

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…

Communities of Color Face Unexpected Foe in Foreclosure Prevention

Communities of Color Face Unexpected Foe in Foreclosure Prevention

By Rachel Goodman, Staff Attorney, ACLU Racial Justice Program at 11:09am

Millions of Americans are still suffering the effects of the subprime mortgage meltdown. More than four million homeowners have been foreclosed upon already, and nearly 11 million are "underwater," that is, they owe more on their mortgages than their…