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Justifying the Patriots Act - Research Paper Example

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Name of the Student History and Political Science Name of the Concerned Professor 2 May 2013 Patriot Act There is no denying the fact that Patriot Act is a piece of legislation that has accrued much controversy and opposition since the day of its inception…
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Justifying the Patriots Act

Download file to see previous pages... Before delving on the validity and appropriateness of the Patriot Act, it is a must to take a stock of the typical American mindset and way of thinking. The opposition garnered by the Patriot Act could only be well understood when it is placed aside the essential American ethos and the values and norms that are dear to Americans. America is a nation that is devoted to the values of liberty and strongly shuns any law or arrangement that takes something out of the rights and privileges extended to the masses by the constitution of the United States of America. Though the detractors of Patriot Act abhor it as an intrusion into the privacy of the common Americans, a more balanced and sane approach towards this legislation establishes beyond doubt that it is a law that is pivotal to the security and safety of the United States of America (Browne 1). Before trying to wrest any strong opinion regarding the appropriateness and validity of the Patriot Act it is important to understand the times in which this legislation was conceived and the things it intended to do. The USA PATRIOT Act was act of the US Congress that was signed into law on October 26, 2001. It goes without saying that the Patriot Act was a response to the mayhem caused by the 9/11 terrorist acts and intended to safeguard the life and property of the American masses. As the full form of the Patriot Act that is Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act suggests, the purpose of the Patriot Act was to strengthen the arms of the America law and order agencies and the intelligence community by endowing to them a range of powers and possibilities. It is really worthwhile to delve on the provisions brought into existence by this act. The Patriot Act intended to safeguard civil liberties. It allowed the Secret Service to establish a nationwide electronic surveillance system and provided for the confiscation of the property of foreign persons engaging in terrorist acts (Department of Justice 1). It widened the potential of the intelligence services to conduct surveillance on the terrorist elements, without being subservient to the consent of the courts (Department of Justice 1). This act intended to curtail the financial power of the terrorist groups and stressed a stronger border security (Department of Justice 1). The National Security Letters (NSL) provision of this act allowed access to the paper work related to the suspicious citizens, to the intelligence agencies (Department of Justice 1). It facilitated an enhanced sharing of information and inputs between the intelligence agencies and had provisions for extending compensation to the victims of terrorism (Department of Justice 1). The Patriot Act also brought in a range of crimes within the ambit of what is broadly defined as acts of terrorism (Department of Justice 1). The overall purpose of the Patriot Act was to bring about the sweeping changes that not only armed the law and order institutions and intelligence agencies with the teeth they needed to wage a pragmatic war on the terrorist gro ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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