Hell No: Your Right to Dissent in 21st-Century America

Overview

In the Age of Terrorism, the United States has become a much more dangerous place-for activists and dissenters, whose First Amendment rights are all too frequently abridged by the government.

In Hell No, the Center for Constitutional Rights, the country's leading public interest law organization offers a timely report on government attacks on dissent and protest in the United States, along with a readable and essential guide for activists, ...

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Hell No: Your Right to Dissent in 21st-Century America

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Overview

In the Age of Terrorism, the United States has become a much more dangerous place-for activists and dissenters, whose First Amendment rights are all too frequently abridged by the government.

In Hell No, the Center for Constitutional Rights, the country's leading public interest law organization offers a timely report on government attacks on dissent and protest in the United States, along with a readable and essential guide for activists, teachers, grandmothers, and anyone else who wants to oppose government policies and actions.

Hell No explores the current situation of attacks upon and criminalization of dissent arid protest, from the surveillance of activists to the disruption of demonstrations, from the labeling of protestors as "terrorists" to the jailing of those the government claims are giving "material support" to its perceived enemies. Offering detailed, hands-on advice on everything from "sneak and peek" searches to "Can the Government Monitor My Text Messages?" and what to do "If an Agent Knocks," Hell No lays out several key responses that every person should know in order to protect themselves from government surveillance and interference with their rights.

Concluding with the controversial 2008 Mukasey FBI Guidelines, which currently regulate the government's domestic response to dissent, Hell No is an indispensable tool in the effort to give free speech and protest meaning in a post-9/11 world.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

In the aftermath of 9/11, the government clamped down on dissenters of all kinds and increased surveillance of citizens in the name of protecting them from terrorism. Attorney-activists Ratner and Kunstler argue that we are paying a high price for protection against perceived terrorist threats. Americans exercising cherished rights of free speech and assembly now stand to find themselves investigated by the FBI and other government agencies. Ratner and Kunstler begin with a historical overview of times when the government curbed the First Amendment right to dissent in "emergency" situations, most recently with the Patriot Act. They offer detailed descriptions of the kinds of tactics used by federal law enforcement agents and how protest groups and individuals can protect themselves. They argue that since enactment of the Patriot Act, the FBI has morphed into a kind of political police, collecting information on protesters against everything from war to animal cruelty to environmental issues. Domestic dissent has come to be equated with terrorism to make it easier to curb protests. Compelling and useful reading for activists.
—Booklist
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595585400
  • Publisher: New Press, The
  • Publication date: 8/9/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author


The Center for Constitutional Rights is an organization dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Michael Ratner is an attorney and the board chair of the Center for Constitutional Rights. He is well known for his human rights activism and is the author of numerous books, including The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld (The New Press). He lives in New York City. Margaret Ratner Kunstler is an attorney in private practice. As education director at the Center for Constitutional Rights, she originated the Movement Support Network and authored “If an Agent Knocks.” Kunstler is the President of the William Moses Kunstler Fund for Racial Justice, a foundation established in 1995 in the memory of her late husband to combat racism in the criminal justice system. She lives in New York City.
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Table of Contents


1. An introduction discussing the current state of dissent
2. If An Agent Knocks. Sections Include:
Can An Agent Search My Trash?
“Sneak and Peek” searches
What is Entrapment?
When Can the Government Tap My Phone Calls?
Can the Government Monitor My Text Messages?
National Security Letters
What Threats Do Grand Juries Pose to Activists?
Special Considerations for Non-Citizens
3. Restore. Protect. Expand: The Right to Dissent (CCR white paper)
4. FBI manual for infiltrating activist groups
5. A history of the right to dissent in the United States
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