It is amazing to me, how quickly things are moving. A few days ago we were gathering signatures to urge President Obama to veto the sections in the Defense Authorization Act. Especially the sections that cemented the insidious and vague lanugage left over from the Patriot Act about indefinitely detaining American Citizens on American soil without right to due process. Well, Wednesday a little piece was added to the bill that allowed the President the discretion to determine when a situation warranted this special power (basically making the Executive Branch even more almighty), and our President has now declared he is ready to sign the bill.
What a disappointment!
What a disappointment!
Yet there is still hope. There is a bipartisan initiative called the "Due Process Guarantee Act of 2011" that is addressing this issue. The Senators co-sponsoring this bill are: Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Mike Lee (R-UT), Mark Udall (D-CO), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Rand Paul (R-KY), Chris Coons (D-DE), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Al Franken (D-MN), Tom Udall (D-NM), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO
We have generated a petition to collect signatures in support of this initiative. If you wonder what this is all about - please read my last blog posting for more background on this subject.
If you care about living in a free nation - then please know that the Bill of Rights in essence is being re-written in front of our very eyes... If this Due Process Guarantee Act does not pass, it will be up to whatever president, who happens to be in the White House, to determine whether a certain (dissenting) group or individual is really a "terrorist organization" that wants to harm the homeland or not.
So now is the time to wake up and smell the coffee before a current or future president has the discretion to declare groups of demonstrators, or single voices of dissent, for terrorists. He then can pack them off to detention camps a la Guantanamo Bay indefinitely and without right to due process. The Due Process Guarantee Act of 2011 will prohibit the "indefinite detention of lawful citizens."
This should concern you greatly whether you think of yourself as understanding the dissent voiced by either Tea Partiers or Occupiers. And this should concern you greatly, if you just want to live in a nation that claims to allow free citizens the ability to express their views without fear of being hauled off to jail indefinitely!
Please go and support this bipartisan initiative here!