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Homeland Security Activity – Civil Liberties Essay

Individuals’ rights of American people provided and guaranteed under fourth amendments of American constitution, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), limited powers of security and law enforcement agencies are some of the obstacles that impede the way of the law enforment agencies to disrupt terrorist plots and prevent attacks inside the United States.

But the other point of view is that these legal and constitutional provisions are not hindrance to security but are in accordance with cherished American ideals of personal freedom, right of privacy and the constitutional provision for no illegal and unjustified intrusion in the lives of American national. Bush administration defends new presidential orders and law-making on the grounds that old legal structures like FISA impede the speedy and agile actions needed to acquire the information about the activities of terrorists and their agents and to disrupt the acts of terrorism(Risen & Lichtblau, 2005).

Another important aspect of this controversy is the violation of privacy rights provided under fourth amendments. For example, Bush order enabling NSA to conduct warrantless wiretapping is a violation of Fourth Amendment that protects the right of American Citizens against unreasonable surveillance. We all are well aware of the fact that Goverrnment’s intentions are good. Its sole motive is to authorize the agencies with necessary powers for speedy interception of terrorists’ activities.

But there is a proper and lawful way to capacitate the security agencies with these authorities i. e. to formulate new laws if the previous ones are obsolete and not capable of handling the critical situation. And if the present surveillance system requires modifications and amendments, it must not be modified at the cost of the rights of privacy provided by fourth amendment.


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