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Current Topic: Civil Liberties

China hits back on human rights - Apr. 3, 2003
Topic: Civil Liberties 3:03 pm EST, Apr  3, 2003

] The report said the U.S. rights record had deteriorated
] in the wake of the September 11, 2001, attacks on
] Washington and New York.
] "Racial discrimination has been on the rise in the United
] States since the Sept 11 terrorist attacks.
] Discrimination against Muslims and Arabs is the most
] serious," it said.
] It also said the Patriot Act, an anti-terrorism law, had
] led to torture and forced confessions.
] The United States had "frequently committed blunt
] violations of human rights" of the people of other
] countries, it said, and pointed to human suffering in the
] U.S.-led war in Iraq and military action in Afghanistan
] as examples.
] It accused the United States of having a "democracy of
] the rich" that was not representative of the majority and
] of excessive violence that "has resulted in ineffective
] protection of life and security of the person."

China hits back on human rights - Apr. 3, 2003

Libraries post Patriot Act warnings
Topic: Civil Liberties 5:50 pm EST, Mar 18, 2003

] Along with the usual reminders to hold the noise down and
] pay overdue fines, library patrons in Santa Cruz are
] seeing a new type of sign these days: a warning that
] records of the books they borrow may wind up in the hands
] of federal agents.
] The signs, posted in the 10 county branches last week and
] on the library's Web site, also inform the reader that
] the USA Patriot Act "prohibits library workers from
] informing you if federal agents have obtained records
] about you."
] "Questions about this policy," patrons are told, "should
] be directed to Attorney General John Ashcroft, Department
] of Justice, Washington, D.C. 20530."

I think this is an excellent way to get more support for the "Freedom to Read Protection Act" that was introduced last week. Something I'm fully in support of.

More information at this Memestreams Thread, too:

Libraries post Patriot Act warnings - Passenger finds 'chilling' note from bag handler - Mar. 16, 2003
Topic: Civil Liberties 4:18 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] An airline passenger who had two "No War with Iraq" signs
] in his suitcase says the federal security agent who
] opened his luggage inserted a note criticizing his
] "anti-American attitude."
] "I found it chilling and a little Orwellian to have
] received this message," said Seth Goldberg, 41, of
] Cranbury, New Jersey.
] Federal Transportation Security Administration officials
] are investigating. - Passenger finds 'chilling' note from bag handler - Mar. 16, 2003

Senate scrutinizes air travel database | CNET
Topic: Civil Liberties 5:41 pm EST, Mar 14, 2003

] The U.S. Congress on Thursday took the first
] step toward curbing a government computer system that
] will perform intensive background checks on American
] citizens who are traveling by air.

Senate scrutinizes air travel database | CNET

Chinese try mobile death vans -
Topic: Civil Liberties 3:53 pm EST, Mar 13, 2003

] China is equipping its courts with mobile execution vans
] as it shifts away from the communist system's traditional
] bullet in the head, towards a more "civilised" use of
] lethal injection.
] Intermediate Courts of the southern province of Yunnan
] were issued with 18 new execution vans on February 28 and
] a court official said some have already been used.
] "We cannot tell you how many executions so far, otherwise
] you could work out from the daily rate how many we carry
] out," the official said.
] Chinese authorities keep execution numbers a secret, but
] Western human rights monitors believe it is about 15,000
] a year, more than the rest of the world's judicial
] executions combined.
] The death penalty can apply for serious crimes against
] the person, armed robbery, drug trafficking, major cases
] of corruption and political violence.
] Many public executions have been held in football
] stadiums so traditional execution methods are no secret.
] The condemned criminal is taken by open truck to the
] execution ground and made to kneel with hands cuffed and
] head bowed, before being shot in the head. Families who
] want to reclaim the body are charged for the bullet.

Chinese try mobile death vans - : Mall Wants to Drop Peace T-Shirt Charges
Topic: Civil Liberties 6:03 pm EST, Mar  6, 2003

] Officials at a mall where a man was arrested for refusing
] to remove an anti-war T-shirt asked Wednesday that
] trespassing charges against him be dropped.

Had a feeling this was going to happen quick. : Mall Wants to Drop Peace T-Shirt Charges

BBC NEWS | Middle East | Iranians arrested for net dating
Topic: Civil Liberties 6:43 pm EST, Mar  3, 2003

] Dozens of young Iranians have been detained for "unlawful
] actions" after using a website to arrange dates,
] officials say.
] A militia commander said 68 men and women were arrested
] in the capital Tehran, according to a report by Iran's
] official Islamic Republic News Agency (Irna).


BBC NEWS | Middle East | Iranians arrested for net dating

U.S. plan: Threat level for every flyer - Feb. 28, 2003
Topic: Civil Liberties 3:52 pm EST, Feb 28, 2003

So are you more likely a terrorist if you have a small bank account with lots of NFS's or if you have millions of dollars and large transactions? More dangerously "Unlike the current system, in which data stays with the airlines' reservation systems, the new setup will be managed by TSA. Only government officials with proper security clearance will be able to use it.". This means if you keep getting flagged as a problem, you cannot review the information and make corrections. Disturbing.

U.S. plan: Threat level for every flyer - Feb. 28, 2003 Feds Weed Out Drug Paraphernalia Sites
Topic: Civil Liberties 7:53 pm EST, Feb 26, 2003

] If the court orders the sites to be redirected, Ashcroft
] said, they will point to a Web page that says:
] "By application of the United States Drug Enforcement
] Administration, the Web site you are attempting to visit
] has been restrained by the United States District Court
] for the Western District of Pennsylvania pursuant to
] Title 21, United States Code, Section 853 (e)(1)(a)."

I gotta be careful what I joke about.. After I posted that last meme, I saw this linked on Slashdot. Feds Weed Out Drug Paraphernalia Sites - Police kept files on 'Trench Coat Mafia' group after Columbine - Feb. 20, 2003
Topic: Civil Liberties 10:53 pm EST, Feb 20, 2003

] The documents were among intelligence files that the city
] released as a result of an unrelated lawsuit in which the
] police are accused of violating the constitutional rights
] of protesters.
] The American Civil Liberties Union sued the city last
] March after learning that the Denver Police Department
] had compiled surveillance files on at least 3,200 people
] and 208 groups. The organization said the police didn't
] just target known or suspected criminals, but also
] singled out peaceful activists.
] The documents released Wednesday indicate that officers
] watched people ranging from anti-war protesters to
] members of militia groups and motorcycle gangs. - Police kept files on 'Trench Coat Mafia' group after Columbine - Feb. 20, 2003

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