Private Security and Patriot Act Term Paper

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Sikhs are also mistakenly included since police are unable to detect the difference. (District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia Advisory Committees to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 2003) a lot of people are being arrested on very technical immigration infringements of visa, and immigration judges will never let go an individual till the FBI articulates a curiosity in that particular person. For instance, on one occasion a student who missed to put his signature on an I-20 immigration form was held and had been imprisoned for six weeks. In its declaration to the Immigration Court deliberating to retain the youth in jail, the FBI stated that it had been unable to exclude the odds that he is in some manner or the other associated with or has knowledge regarding the terrorist assaults. Totally no positive accusation of any kind was available that might associate this student in any manner to the September 11 incidents. In some other instances, individuals are being detained on grounds of technical traffic infringements. (Cole, 2002)

There were several instances in which Muslims and those of foreign Asian origin were facing troubles in the name of security. Groups of federal agents on March 20-21, 2002, with the U.S. Customer Services as their head combed Muslim houses, businesses, educational institutions, and establishments in Northern Virginia in a chain of raids entitled Operation Green Quest. The searches scared and enraged the Mohammedans as agents smashed doors, chained people, and made seizures of private property arraying from PCs to children's toys. The government stated that it was looking for substantiation of monetary inputs to terrorists overseas, however Muslim teams fervently negated such associations and dissented the strategies applied by the agents in undertaking the searches. The government has also performed some added actions of interest ever since the U.S.A. Patriot Act was passed. It has brought out rules permitting government agencies to overhear the conversations between the attorney and client without approaching the court to avail a warrant. This is applicable to anybody arrested by the federal government, and not just those linked with searches associated with the 9/11 incident. The U.S.A. Patriot Act therefore lends wide-ranging enforcement authority to the federal government. Majority of its provisions are applicable to every federal probe, not simply those linked with terrorism. Most of the provisions which Congress disapproved when it took into account antiterrorism regulation in 1996 later resurfaced in the U.S.A. Patriot Act. (District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia Advisory Committees to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 2003)

Prior to the enforcement of the Patriot Act, foreigners were sent for employing in or favoring terrorist actions. The Patriot Act renders them deportable for almost any relational support which they offer to a "terrorist establishment, " regardless of whether the foreigner's support has any linkage with violence, much less terrorism. The Patriot Act revives ideological prohibition, the custom of refusing entry to foreigners for the purpose of speech only. It bars foreigners, those who support terrorist activities, or those championing terrorist activity," or who "influence others to back terrorist activity or a terrorist outfit," or who are part of the groups so supporting. Leaving aside or discriminating against people for their ideas is directly opposed to the character of freedom for which the United States is positioned. Under the provision of the Patriot Act, a foreigner who dispatched coloring books to the address of a daycare centre managed by a selected organization would be deportable as a terrorist, although if she could prove that the coloring books were utilized only by three-year-old kids. Further a Quaker immigrant who dispatched a book on Gandhi on the merits of non-violence to seek to insist a group to renounce violence would even be deportable as a terrorist. Truly, the law expands even to those who back a group in an effort to oppose terrorism. Taking action against people for such behavior infringes the First as well as the Fifth amendments. Every person in the United States possess a First Amendment privilege to keep linkage with groups which have legal and illegal purposes, till the time they do not advance the group's unlawful purposes. Plus the Fifth Amendment directs that the "in our jurisprudence guilt is personal." In the absence of relationship between the foreigner's support and terrorist actions, the Constitution is infringed upon. (Cole, 2002) Nevertheless in the present setting, the courts will not possibly go against the U.S.A. Patriot Act. (District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia Advisory Committees to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 2003)

However there is also another side to the argument which states that the President, Congress, courts and the general people have from the very initial stages of this nation's history differentiated the opportunity of protected privileges through a judging of rival concerns - the public safety and the liberty interest in the opinion of Judge Richard a. Posner of the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Seventh Circuit. The more secured the country considers itself to be, the greater interest the judges will be eager to accord to the liberty interest. Therefore it is debated that heightened observation and more specifically, wider wiretapping authority is not worse for civil liberties. It constitutes a more precise and benevolent process of getting inside terrorist cells compared to the primary option that is deploying and engaging informers which is a dreadful, hideous, and undependable activity wherein the government is already independent to employ without restrictions. The more limited the government's observation powers, the more it will put reliance on informants. (Murray, 2003)

Besides, putting a check on the government's power to collect information by means of wiretapping is never the sole method to safeguard against information misuse. Moreover, the FBI has very scanty inducement to kill time and resources on unnecessary eavesdropping. The danger of being observed by or tarnished by the FBI appears very miniscule compared to the danger of being smashed to pieces or given poison by terrorists. Besides, other important protests against the Act which was purported to impact private security include sanctioning FBI agents to investigate mosques, which according to the Justice Department was done merely by one-fifth of FBI's 45 field offices; reach to business documents, which in their opinion covers at libraries and bookstores; and augmenting CIA control over internal intelligence by sanctioning the agency to ask for independent investigation. (Murray, 2003) Therefore the supporters of the Patriot Act state that this recent law will be good not just for security but even for liberty. (Taylor, 2003)

To conclude, it may be said that in a lot of ways our country is going through unexplored paths. We have been compelled to combat a conflict which is unprovoked; war unleashed against us by the nihilistic terrorists, not by the conventional opponent, a nation state. During these periods, when the edifice of liberty is put under assault, it is important that we both reiterate the principles of our constitutional democracy and also distinguish the methods needed to secure those principles against the dangers of terrorism.


Cole, David. (2002, Sept) "Trading Liberty for Security after September 11" FPIF Policy

Report. Retrieved 8 July, 2007 at

Dinh, Viet. D. (2004, May 1) "USA Patriot Act" German Law Journal, vol. 5, no. 5, pp: 8-10.

District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia Advisory Committees to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. (2003, Jun). "Civil Rights Concerns in the Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Area in the Aftermath of the September 11, 2001, Tragedies" Retrieved 8 July, 2007 at

Lee, Laurie Thomas. (2003, Jun 22) "The U.S.A. PATRIOT Act and telecommunications: privacy under attack" Rutgers Computer and Technology Law Journal, vol. 17, no. 1, pp: 31-33.

Murray, Frank. J. (2003, Jun 16) "Patriot Act of 2001 Casts Wide Net" the Washington Times.

p. A4.

Taylor, Stuart. (2003, Winter) "Rights, Liberties, and Security: Recalibrating the Balance after September 11" the Brookings Review, vol.21, no.1. pp. 25-31.

Wong, Mary Wai San. (2002) "Electronic Surveillance and Privacy…[continue]

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