On August 19th, Attorney General John Ashcroft will begin traveling to over a dozen U.S. cities to “set the record straight” about “mischaracterizations” of powers granted to the Justice Department under the USA Patriot Act. Ashcroft may also advocate for additional powers proposed by the so-called “Patriot Act II.”

ACT NOW! capwiz.com/voice4change/mail/oneclick_compose/?alertid=3142006

Common Cause has a long history of advocating for civil liberties. We continue to monitor the effects of the Patriot Act and its authorization of government intrusion into lives of average Americans. We believe that portions of Patriot Act violate the fundamental rights guaranteed to you under the Constitution.

Is “Big Brother” Here?

He could be. The USA Patriot Act, passed by Congress shortly after 9/11, grants the government new authority to investigate not just suspected terrorists, but you, your neighbor, and any other United States citizen or resident. For example:

1. The Act expands the government’s ability to look at your personal records, kept by any organization - libraries, doctor’s offices, banks - without showing any evidence that you are involved in wrong-doing.

2. It also permits the government to investigate you based on the books you read, the websites you visit, or Letters-to-the-Editor you write.

3. If you are an activist and participate in protests against government action you put yourself at risk of surveillance or even arrest.

For more information: www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.cfm?ID=12126&c=207

It’s Time For ACTION. Tell Mr. Ashcroft what you think about the Patriot Act! Here are three ways you can TAKE ACTION:

1. Send a message to Mr. Ashcroft. http://capwiz.com/voice4change/mail/oneclick_compose/?alertid=3142006

2. Spread the word. Forward this alert to your friends, family, and co-workers. www.voice4change.org/stories/send2friends.asp?id=030820~cc.asp

3. Attend the event with Mr. Ashcroft if he comes to a city near you. www.commoncause.org/action/action.cfm?artid=69&topicid=16

Warm Regards,
Voice4Change.org http://www.voice4change.org