St. Petersburg Times (Florida)
No pause in Patriot Act pounding
BY ROBYN E. BLUMNER
Times Perspective Columnist
Published October 26, 2003
When pressed over whether Lakers star Kobe Bryant should continue playing basketball while the issue of his alleged sexual
assault is under consideration by the courts, NBA Commissioner David Stern told the Los Angeles Times: "Absolutely. We don't
have a Patriot Act in the NBA."
It appears the repressive nature of the USA Patriot Act, which is 2 years old today, has penetrated the American consciousness
to such an extent that it now stands as shorthand parlance for any type of unfairness. Despite Attorney General John Ashcroft's
barnstorming tour of the country, selling the act to friendly audiences of law enforcement, nearly 200 communities, including
three states, have passed resolutions objecting to its excesses. ...
While Bush is working to undo more of our liberty, there are bipartisan efforts in Congress pushing back. Perhaps
the most promising is the "Safety and Freedom Ensured (SAFE) Act" that would rollback some of the worst excesses of the Patriot
Act. If even NBA commissioners know the Patriot Act is a bad thing, what is Congress waiting for?
© Copyright 2002-2004 St. Petersburg Times
Resistance to the Patriot Act is growing in the American heartland
The complete article is currently (4/5/04) available on the
MSNBC website at-- http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3540605/ [found through a Google search by article title on the above date]
Nov. 20 issue — ... Earlier this month, just to raise some eyebrows, the
Geuda Springs [Kansas] town council passed an ordinance requiring every head of family to own a gun, and ammunition, and be
ready to use it. ...
If the administration believes folks like these are buying the official line from Washington,
it had better take another look. ...
... [Philip] Russell supported [the gun ordinance], he said, because he wanted to provoke people,
make them question this whole idea that government can mandate what you do in a nation that’s supposed to be free. And
when Russell started talking about the Patriot Act and associated laws rushed through Congress after September 11, 2001, everybody
in the caf・started listening, and nodding. The Federal government can strip you of all your legal rights, he
said: the right to legal council, to an appearance in court, even to be informed what it is you’re charged with. “How
do we know they’re not going to use that against us?” said Debra Russell ...
More than 200 cities and counties across the country, and the state legislatures
of Hawaii, Alaska and Vermont have adopted resolutions criticizing the Patriot Act. In Nevada last week, protests drew liberals,
conservatives, Hispanics, libertarians, gay activists—a spectrum so wide, and so deep in the heart of the U.S.A., you’d
think Washington would be listening. But so far, there’s no sign it is. ...
© 2004 MSNBC.com