Blog of Rights

Florida "Surveillance State" license plate

Local Police in Florida Acting Like They’re the CIA (But They’re Not)

By Nathan Freed Wessler, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 10:00am
The City of Sunrise, Florida, tried to take a page from the CIA’s anti-transparency playbook last week when it responded to an ACLU public records request about its use of powerful cell phone location tracking gear by refusing to confirm or deny the existence of any relevant documents. And the state police are trying to get in on the act as well. We have written about the federal government’s abuse of this tactic—called a “Glomar” response—before, but local law enforcement’s adoption of the ploy reaches a new level of absurdity. In this case, the response is not only a violation of Florida law, but is also fatally undermined by records the Sunrise Police Department has already posted online.
How I'm Celebrating Gloria Steinem's Birthday

How I'm Celebrating Gloria Steinem's Birthday

By Diana Scholl, Communications Strategist, ACLU at 8:23am

What would happen, for instance, if suddenly, magically, men could menstruate and women could not? The answer is clear - menstruation would become an enviable, boast-worthy, masculine event: Men would brag about how long and how much. Boys…

Government Agency Proposes Datamining Individuals' Financial Transactions

Government Agency Proposes Datamining Individuals' Financial Transactions

By Sandra Fulton, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:13pm

The endless tide of NSA revelations has made us all too familiar with government agencies’ hunger for personal information, especially in the context of national security. But we’re also seeing surveillance systems being set up by smaller, less…

The Red River Bridge

30 Years a Prisoner

By Angel Harris, Staff Attorney, ACLU Capital Punishment Project at 3:08pm

12 Years a Slave was painful to watch, perhaps the only comfort being that you could walk out of the movie theater into 2014, where such cruelty is ostensibly a thing of the past.

Or is it? Along the Red River in Louisiana – where Solomon…

Sensible Policy, Not Smaller Handcuffs

Sensible Policy, Not Smaller Handcuffs

By Nicole Kief, ACLU & Jennifer Bellamy, Washington Legislative Office at 12:45pm

You may have heard recently about Dontadrian Bruce, the Mississippi high-school student who was almost expelled for holding up the number "3" with his fingers in a photo taken by his science teacher. Dontradian is number 3 on the football team –…

On the Agenda: March 24-28

On the Agenda: March 24-28

By Meghan Groob, Media Relations Associate, ACLU at 11:35am

Have you tuned into cable news lately? I have, and based on what I've seen, the only thing happening in the world these days is the ongoing saga of Malaysian Airlines MH370. While the story is fascinating and heartbreaking, it's a bit hard to remember…

What's the Difference Between Force Feeding and Waterboarding?

What's the Difference Between Force Feeding and Waterboarding?

By Zak Newman, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:02am

The Department of Defense this month publicly released its newest rationalization for the abusive force-feeding program at Guantánamo Bay. In this latest memo on hunger strike policies, the abusive force-feeding program is referred to as "medical…

Voter Registration is Good for Your Health

Voter Registration is Good for Your Health

By Faith Barksdale, Legal Assistant, ACLU at 12:00am

Are voter registration opportunities good medicine? For the one-third of uninsured Americans who are also not registered to vote it would appear so. When people sign up for health care through the Affordable Care Act, they should also have the opportunity…

This Week in Civil Liberties (03/21/2014)

This Week in Civil Liberties (03/21/2014)

By Rekha Arulanantham, ACLU at 3:27pm

This week the ACLU filed a lawsuit challenging which state's ban on marriage for same-sex couples?

True or false: by law, if you complained about problems with accommodations for pumping breast milk at work, your employer must respond appropriately…

Photo: EditorB/Flickr

Police Brutality and Deaf People

By Talila A. Lewis, Founder, HEARD at 1:13pm

Robert Kim, Pearl Pearson, Jonathan Meister...

These are the most recent additions to the long list of deaf people who have been brutally assaulted by police officers for what has been described by officers as failure to respond to officers'…