Legal changes post-Sept. 11

September 11, 2008
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With today being the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, I couldn’t help but think about how our country has changed in seven years. I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but I realize now that we aren’t as isolated from the rest of the world as we once thought, that terrorism can happen in America, and that the U.S. we knew before the attacks will never be the same.

One major change came about through Congress as the Patriot Act. President George W. Bush signed it into law in October 2001, and many of the laws introduced then have been made permanent.

The argument and rush to pass the act was it would make America safer. Giving the government more policing powers, the ability to search private records without having to show a judge that a crime may have been committed, easier access to monitor phone and e-mail communications, and gather information about people, among other powers, were necessary to protect the U.S. from future attacks and find terrorists before they can strike.

My question is one I’m sure many people have had regarding the Patriot Act – is it worth impeding on people’s freedoms and constitutional rights to try to protect our country? Is it OK for the government to obtain personal information without the approval of a judge as long as it’s in the best interest of our country’s safety?

It may be a question that’s hard to answer. Can I say for sure that the Patriot Act has prevented any more attacks? No. But I also can’t say it may not have contributed to keeping Americans safe.
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  1. Based on several recent Indy Star articles, I would agree that being a case worker would be really hard. You would see the worst of humanity on a daily basis; and when things go wrong guess who gets blamed??!! Not biological parent!! Best of luck to those who entered that line of work.

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  3. Don't believe me, listen to Pacino: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6bC9w9cH-M

  4. Law school is social control the goal to produce a social product. As such it began after the Revolution and has nearly ruined us to this day: "“Scarcely any political question arises in the United States which is not resolved, sooner or later, into a judicial question. Hence all parties are obliged to borrow, in their daily controversies, the ideas, and even the language, peculiar to judicial proceedings. As most public men [i.e., politicians] are, or have been, legal practitioners, they introduce the customs and technicalities of their profession into the management of public affairs. The jury extends this habitude to all classes. The language of the law thus becomes, in some measure, a vulgar tongue; the spirit of the law, which is produced in the schools and courts of justice, gradually penetrates beyond their walls into the bosom of society, where it descends to the lowest classes, so that at last the whole people contract the habits and the tastes of the judicial magistrate.” ? Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

  5. Attorney? Really? Or is it former attorney? Status with the Ind St Ct? Status with federal court, with SCOTUS? This is a legal newspaper, or should I look elsewhere?

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