On September 11, 2001, the United States was attacked by a foreign terrorist Muslim group called Al-Queda directed by Osama bin Laden, Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, as well as, others. President George W. Bush appeared on television screens at the Oval office to address the American public after the disaster. Sitting at his desk, he gave a solemn speech about 3 hours after the first attack to address the "evil, despicable acts of terror" and assure the American people's of the strength of our will, army, and government. He promised that he had "directed the full resources for our intelligence and law enforcement communities to find those responsible and bring them to justice" (Bush). Nine days later President Bush declared a War on Terror and just 34 days after that signed into law the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT) Act of 2001 to assist in that war. The USA PATRIOT Act imposes laws that violate our rights to privacy, knowledge of government actions, and freedom of speech, the right to be arrested and informed of the evidence for the charges and what those charges are, and the right to a lawyer. It gives the CIA and FBI rights to share information and roles that invite a great abuse of power.
[...] The Patriot Act allowed for these errors to be made for 5 years before any adjustments were made though. One can only imagine how many “suspected terrorists” were transported and imprisoned for the first half decade before the adjustment was made. Mark Fallon, a member of the Criminal Investigation Task Force, told the story of two detainees, who were suspected in a rocket attack against U.S. forces in Afghanistan: evidence against them was that they were found wearing dark olive green jackets similar to the one worn by the attacker. [...]
[...] The USA PATRIOT Act is in place to assist in the protection of our nation from terrorist attacks. We began a War on Terror in order to end this danger and restore the assurance of freedom for all. In embarking on this mission, we have limited the rights of our people everywhere citizens and non-citizens. We have created a government with the power to abuse all that it has been stood for to protect. It violates the rights given to us by the Constitution and overrides the rights it was given by the Constitution. [...]
[...] We need to address that the Patriot Act first and foremost violates many of our rights protected by the U.S. constitution and Bill of Rights. We need to step up for those being held for charges they are unaware of and the right to a speedy trial with a lawyer guaranteed by the 6th amendment. The way the government has been secretly detaining information from citizens goes too far. We have been guaranteed our security in the Constitution to have our things only be searched in the case of "probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized" and the Patriot Act violates this (Constitution, Amendment 4). [...]
[...] Cornell University Law School. Retrieved on May
[...] Each instance has been for the protection of national security just like the USA PATRIOT Act, but most have been looked back upon as extensive and improper. William Rehnquist, a retired chief justice of the United States, foresaw the actions of a future president following in these footsteps in a book he published in 1998, saying "there is no reason to think that future wartime presidents will act differently from Lincoln, Wilson or Roosevelt" (McCullagh). Joseph Margulies, the lawyer of an Australian prisoner of Guantanamo Bay and victim of torture in Egypt, agrees that the current acts allowed by the Patriot Act follow a pattern of violating the rights in the Constitution that we pride ourselves on as Americans. [...]
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