In light of presidential candidate Ron Paul's recent statements about the unconstitutional nature of the Patriot Act, this Sun-Times editorial presents a thorough overview making the point that it's never too late to voice opposition to the Patriot Act. Since its inception, the ACLU has been outspoken about its opposition to the Patriot Act as a vast invasion of privacy for a broad array of average Americans. The article points out that this Act casts "too wide a net," and could potentially implicate otherwise innocent and unthreatening people.
Defenders of the Patriot Act, such as the conservative Heritage Foundation, find comfort in the fact that the law says an investigation cannot be conducted “solely upon the basis of activities protected by the First Amendment.” But critics, such as the ACLU, are outraged that such perfectly legal activities can be grounds at all for an investigation, requiring only that the FBI present some shred of additional justification.
“It simply could be a relationship with someone caught up in an investigation,” said Ed Yohnka, spokesman for the ACLU of Illinois.