Trading Liberty for Illusion Analysis

Topics: Civil liberties, President of the United States, Supreme Court of the United States Pages: 3 (973 words) Published: June 6, 2013
The events of 11 September 2001 inverted the actions that have led the US government to deal with criminals and terrorists in different and wide-ranging principles and measures. Standards that are mildly intrusive, coercive, and less democratic induce Security Departments to break privacies and breach human rights in the name of ‘war on terror’ The power given to the government to prevent and investigate the potential acts of terrorists was not balanced with civil liberties. These rights were guaranteed by the First Amendment “[to allow] the individuals to speak, think, assemble, worship, or petition without ‘government’ (or even private) inferences or restraints” (thefreedictionary, 2005). Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, concludes in his book, All the Laws but One: Civil Liberties in Wartime, "in any civilized society the most important task is achieving a proper balance between freedom and order" (Rehnquist, 2007, n.d.). But the events of 11 September suggest extravagant involvements introduce the security measures. In her article, “Trading Liberty for Illusion,” Wendy Kaminer, a lawyer and the author of several books, argues how the events of the September 11 attacks have affected the civil liberties. She says that whenever something like this happens, people become afraid, which requires the government to take all the necessary precautions to secure its citizens. But she also adds that those actions go beyond the logical approach to safety. By attempting to use several surveillance devices to track criminals or abnormal behaviors, Kaminer asserts that such processes are pointless and demonstrated its failures. Kaminer, effectively, displays her claim by accusing the government of ignoring the civil liberties. In fact, issues like civil liberties, electronic surveillance, habeas corpus, and privacy rights have been fundamentally and irreversibly changed in the eye of the US government. The level of support for civil liberties in...

References: Wendy, K. (2002). Trading Liberty for Illusion. Kennedy: M. & Kennedy, W. (7th Eds.), Writing in disciplines (pp. 397-399). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
Civil liberties. Thefreedictionary. (2005). Retrieved from
Daniela, L. C. (2011). Security versus Civil Liberties and Human Rights. Retrieved from
William, H.R. (1998). All the laws but one: Civil liberties in wartime. New York, NY: Random House.
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