ACLU

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Why Bush Should Be Pardoned for Torture

ACLU thinks it's the only way to stop future torture

(Newser) - A Senate panel's report on the CIA's use of torture lays out a "blueprint for criminal investigations" of George W. Bush and others, writes ACLU chief Anthony D. Romero in the New York Times . And while that argument might not be surprising coming from the ACLU, this... More »

Sex Offenders Suffer 'Inhuman' Conditions in Miami: ACLU

Ex-convicts' camp full of rats, lacks toilets: suit

(Newser) - Following their release from prison, registered sex offenders are experiencing "horrid" conditions in Miami: Living outdoors near train tracks, they have no running water or toilets, and they share their camp with rats, the American Civil Liberties Union says in a suit. Their living area is a result of... More »

'Dangerously Militarized' Cops Misusing SWAT Teams

Army tactics, equipment used for drug raids

(Newser) - Police forces across America have become "dangerously militarized" and are using equipment and tactics taken straight from the Army to do things like serve search warrants and search homes for drugs, a new American Civil Liberties Union report finds. Among the findings of the report on police militarization, as... More »

Judge: No-Fly List Is Unconstitutional

Air travel an 'aspect of liberties,' she says

(Newser) - In today's world, international travel isn't a "mere convenience or luxury," but "a necessary aspect of liberties sacred to members of a free society," a federal judge has decided, striking down the government's post-9/11 no-fly list procedures as unconstitutional. The judge ordered the... More »

Judge in '0INK' Case: Plate Rules Make No Sense

Indiana court orders state to clarify guidelines

(Newser) - Quick, which of these license plates was approved and which rejected in Indiana: HATER or HATERS? You probably couldn't tell, and that, along with a host of other similar seemingly random discrepancies, led a judge to yesterday declare the state's system for approving personalized plates unconstitutional, the Indy ... More »

School Pays Student $70K for Facebook 'Interrogation'

They forced her to hand over password to Facebook, email

(Newser) - A Minnesota school has agreed to pay a student $70,000 to settle a lawsuit stemming from an incident in which administrators forcibly perused her Facebook account, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports. It began when Riley Stratton, then 13, posted on Facebook complaining that a hall monitor was mean, and the... More »

Michigan: We're Protecting Kids From 'WAR SUX' Plate

State defends rejection of personalized license plate

(Newser) - Michigan rejected a Washtenaw County man's request for a personalized license plate reading "WAR SUX," and the state says it's all about protecting the children. David DeVarti, with the help of the ACLU, sued over the rejection, accusing officials of violating the First Amendment, but lawyers... More »

Woman Gets $5K Bill After Cavity Searches for Drugs

Those searches turned up no sign of drugs, by the way

(Newser) - A 54-year-old New Mexico woman is suing US customs and a hospital after an escalating series of drug searches that took six hours and yielded no sign of drugs—only a $5,000 hospital bill for her trouble. Some details, as rounded up by Raw Story , Reason , and the AP... More »

Judge to Baker: You Must Serve Gay Weddings

Colorado cake-maker refused to contribute to same-sex ceremony

(Newser) - A baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex ceremony must serve gay couples despite his religious beliefs or face fines, a judge said today. The order from administrative law judge Robert N. Spencer said Masterpiece Cakeshop in suburban Denver discriminated against a couple "because of... More »

Woman Sues Catholic Bishops Over Hospital Miscarriage

Catholic hospitals' abortion rule puts women at risk: lawsuit

(Newser) - A Michigan woman is suing US Catholic bishops after having a painful miscarriage at a Catholic hospital that did not offer her an abortion, the Detroit Free Press reports. In her lawsuit, Tamesha Means says she went to Mercy Health Partners in Muskegon in 2010 when her water broke after... More »

3.3K US Prisoners Serving Life for Non-Violent Crimes

ACLU report slams 'grotesquely' out of whack sentencing

(Newser) - When you think of criminals who get locked away for life with no hope of parole, murderers or rapists might come to mind. But a guy who shoplifted a $159 jacket? He is one of 3,278 prisoners serving such a sentence in federal or state prisons in the US... More »

Next Stop for 'Boobies' Bracelets: Supreme Court?

Pa. school board votes to appeal federal court decision

(Newser) - The court battle between two girls and their Pennsylvania school over "I (heart) Boobies!" bracelets could be settled by the US Supreme Court. The Easton Area School District board voted 7-1 last night to appeal a federal appeals court's decision that rejected its claim the bracelets are... More »

ATF to Whistle-Blower: You Can't Publish a Book

John Dodson wrote account of Operation Fast and Furious

(Newser) - ATF agent John Dodson blew the whistle on Operation Fast and Furious , in which feds accidentally handed Mexican drug cartels 2,000 guns. Now Dodson's bosses say he can't publish a book on the scandal—though he plans to do so anyway, Fox News reports. Dodson gave the... More »

Father of Slain Tsarnaev Friend Will Sue FBI

He wants to know the truth about Florida shooting

(Newser) - The father of the Chechen man shot dead by the FBI while being interviewed about his friendship with Boston bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev says he plans to sue the agency—not for compensation, but for the truth about his son's death. Abdulbaki Todashev, father of 27-year-old Ibragim, has traveled... More »

ACLU: Millions of Innocent Drivers Being Tracked

Vast databases store info on your plate, movements

(Newser) - You know about speed cameras and red-light cameras. But did you know about plate-reading cameras? Few people do, and that's a worry for the ACLU, which says the cameras are infringing on our civil liberties. Unlike the speed and red-light cameras, which are activated only when someone violates a... More »

ACLU Sues for Gay Marriage in Pennsylvania

Sets sights on Virginia, North Carolina

(Newser) - The ACLU isn't wasting any time in expanding gay marriage following the Supreme Court's big rulings. First up: a lawsuit in Pennsylvania seeking to end the state's ban on same-sex vows, the New York Times reports. The suit has 23 plaintiffs including a truck driver, a stay-at-home-mom,... More »

NSA Gets to Decide Who's Foreign

New documents reveal rules on surveillance targets

(Newser) - For weeks, President Obama and other senior officials have touted the special FISA court as a safeguard on NSA surveillance. Well, the Guardian and Washington Post have obtained top-secret documents submitted to and approved by that court that outline the rules and limits placed on the program. How reassuring they... More »

ACLU Sues White House Over Phone 'Dragnet'

Group says its constitutional rights have been violated

(Newser) - The ACLU usually sues on behalf of others, but this time it's going to court on behalf of itself. The civil-liberties group has sued the federal government over the "dragnet" it uses to collect information about phone calls , reports Talking Points Memo . Because the ACLU is itself a... More »

Gay Couple: Bakery Wouldn't Make Us Wedding Cake

They file discrimination claim in Colorado

(Newser) - Do you have a right to not bake a cake for someone? Or the right to not be discriminated against by cake bakers? That's the issue at hand in a Colorado discrimination claim. David Mullins and Charlie Craig went into Masterpiece Cakeshop hoping to get a wedding cake to... More »

Hey, IRS: Even the Tea Party Deserves Free Speech

ACLU execs says the scandal highlights the dangers of limiting political speech

(Newser) - The IRS' stunning admission that it singled out Tea Party groups for more aggressive tax enforcement should be a warning to all Americans to guard their free speech rights jealously, ACLU officials Michael Macleod-Ball and Gabe Rottman write for CNN . There's been a rush to regulate political speech since... More »

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