at liberty podcast

At Liberty is a weekly podcast that explores the most pressing civil rights and civil liberties questions of our time. Catch new episodes on Thursday at 9am ET.

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More than 2,000 firefighters battling the blaze in California this summer came from inside the state’s prison system. They were part of a national workforce of incarcerated people, paid pennies per hour and sometimes nothing at all, for hourly labor benefiting the U.S. economy. Driven in part by demands for...

America’s response to the 9/11 attacks have dominated our foreign policy, military priorities, and human rights record for 17 years now. Perhaps no place on earth is a better symbol of that response than the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Today, 40 prisoners remain, as does the legacy of torture...

More than a month ago, a federal court ordered the Trump administration to reunite immigrant children and parents it had separated at the U.S. border. Yet hundreds of children remain on their own in government custody, and many of their parents have already been deported. Lee Gelernt, deputy director of...

The Supreme Court is meant to protect the rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution. Historically, however, it has repeatedly failed to live up to that promise. Can one justice change the course of the court? Erwin Chemerinsky, a Supreme Court litigator and dean of Berkeley Law School, discusses the...

Many of the children who are presently gearing up for a new school year are also preparing to face police on a daily basis. The numbers of cops in schools is growing, which often means that instead of a detention or a timeout, routine misbehavior can result in arrest and...

President Trump often demonizes entire immigrant groups, referring to Mexican people as “rapists” and undocumented immigrants as “animals.” Yet statistics show that immigrants, both undocumented and otherwise, are actually less likely to commit crimes than the average U.S. citizen. How did our American political conversation start to conflate immigrants with...

The United States sends more people to prison or jail than any other nation in the world.  Donald Trump pledged to be tough on crime, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions has pushed to reinvigorate the war on drugs. They're contributing to the mass incarceration crisis, but they didn't create it. It's the result of decades of criminal policies...

On Aug. 12, 2017, a group of white supremacists gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia. The day was a disaster, with violence in the streets and Heather Heyer murdered by a man who drove his car into a crowd of anti-racist protesters.  The ACLU of Virginia had represented Jason Kessler, the march organizer,...

It seems like artificial intelligence is everywhere these days — in our homes, in our cars, in our offices, and of course online. Government decisions, too, are being outsourced to computer code. In one Pennsylvania county, for example, welfare services use digital tools to assess the likelihood that a child...

In recent months, Black Americans have had the cops called on them for things like waiting in Starbucks, entering their own dorm rooms, moving into their own apartments, and barbecuing in a public park. Why are these stories making waves now, and what do they say about being Black in...