By: Thomas Nephew
From “Protest of FBI raids” series by Alan
Wilfahrt, on Flickr. (Photo used with permission)
On September 24th, 2010, the FBI raided anti-war and solidarity activists in Chicago (two homes) and Minneapolis (five homes and the office of the Anti-War Committee). During the raids, the FBI took computers, cell phones, documents and personal family items. In total, 14 activists in Minnesota, Illinois, and Michigan were subpoenaed to appear before a Grand Jury. They have subsequently refused to appear.
“Get FISA Right” activists recently decided to add the organization’s name to a petition protesting these raids. Now there’s a chance to learn more about them, and lend support to activists opposing such infringements of First and Fourth Amendment rights.
On November 6, civil liberties activists and experts will gather from 1-4 pm the Friends Meeting House in Washington, DC (2011 Florida Ave., NW) to examine the FBI raids and other attacks on activists, our legal rights, and how our community can respond. Admission is free, the event is open to everyone.
The event program and other details are below the fold.
The FBI Raids: Activists Respond to Government Intrusion
What’s Going On and What Are the Legal Rules in Place? (1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m)
- Update on the FBI raids and other recent incidents of harassment, infiltration and surveillance of activist groups — Sue Udry, Defending Dissent Foundation
- A look at the tools police and intelligence agencies use to quash dissent and the laws that allow it — Michelle Richardson, ACLU (invited)
- Material support laws and the Supreme Court’s Humanitarian Law Project decision: what every peace, solidarity and union activist needs to know — Kay Guinane, Charity and Security Network
- Function of the Grand Jury — John Hardenbergh, National Lawyers Guild
What Are Our Rights? (2:15 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.)
- Know Your Rights – in the streets, in your home, at your office — Jeff Light, Rachael Moshman, Ann Wilcox, John Hardenbergh, National Lawyers Guild
How Should the Movement Respond? (3:10 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
- A discussion led by activists Michael Beer, Nadine Bloch, Raed Jarrar, Gael Murphy
- Solidarity, support and resistance – how should the movement respond to the raids and other recent provocations?
- Advocacy to change the laws that allow unconstitutional surveillance, infiltration and detention.
The event is brought to you by the National Lawyer’s Guild, American Civil Liberties Union, Bill of Rights Defense Committee, Washington Peace Center and Defending Dissent. For more information about this program, contact Malachy Kilbride at 202-841-2230 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Organizations can use an online form to co-sponsor the event, and are then expected to help publicize it. Finally, while it’s not necessary, if you have a Facebook account, it will be helpful and encouraging to let us know you’re attending via this event announcement.
I’ve participated in one organizing call so far, and plan to attend. I’ll report back about it here as best as I can; we’re also hoping to videotape the event and post that as well.