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Freedom Watch • A Year in Prison for Criticizing Police; Police Kill Unarmed Naked Teen; Flashing Headlights To Warn Drivers MIGHT Be Protected Speech

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The Rutherford Institute

Your tax-deductible donations support The Rutherford Institute’s ongoing efforts to make the government play by the rules of the Constitution.

MAY 11, 2019

WHITEHEAD: ON THE ISSUES

D Is for a Dictatorship Disguised as a Democracy

Predator Cops, Guilty of Sex Crimes Against Women and Children, Are a Menace to Society

The Essence of Evil: Sex with Children Has Become Big Business in America

RUTHERFORD: ON THE FRONT LINES

Man Faces a Year in Prison for Criticizing Police

Gov’t Officials Arrest Disabled Veteran for Buying Canned Iced Tea, Bug Spray

Napping Not Allowed: Ban on Sleeping in Cars Could Allow Police to Seize Car Occupants, Vehicles and Carry Out Warrantless Searches

SUPPORT THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM: DONATE TODAY

IN THE COURTS

The Supreme Court’s Majority Defends the Death Penalty

Wisconsin Supreme Court Upholds Gun Questions During Traffic Stops

Federal Judge Sides With Federal Government, Rules Mass Surveillance Can Remain Secret

Massachusetts Judge Says ATF Can Apply A Suspect’s Fingerprints To Unlock An IPhone

Federal Judge Says Flashing Headlights To Warn Drivers Of Hidden Cops MIGHT Be Protected Speech

PODCAST: FREEDOM UNDER FIRE

Freedom Under Fire is a free weekly podcast available on SoundCloud and iTunes.

Predator Cops Are a Menace to Society

The Essence of Evil: Sex with Children Has Become Big Business in America

Podcast Archive

VODCAST: ON TARGET

Vigilantes with a Badge: Warrior Cops Endanger Our Lives and Freedoms

TRI GIFT SHOP

Speak truth to power with these wardrobe staples and support The Rutherford Institute’s critical work while you’re at it!

T-SHIRT: The Rutherford Institute Classic Resistance
T-SHIRT: “Speak Truth to Power”

MUG: “Time to Wake Up!”
MUG: “Make American Free Again”

BOOK: Battlefield America: The War on the American People (Autographed by John W. Whitehead)

AMERICAN POLICE STATE

WATCH: Woman Goes Off on Montana Cops who Walked in Her Home Without a Warrant

Police In Oklahoma Kill Unarmed Naked Teen

Victims Say Domestic Abuse by Police Officers Goes Unpunished

The Growth of the American Police State

AMERICA AT WAR

US and China Account for Almost Half of World’s Military Spending

BEHIND BARS

John Kelly Joins Board of Company Operating Largest Shelter for Unaccompanied Migrant Children

People in Alabama Prisons Are Shackled to Buckets for Days on End

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NATIONAL SECURITY

US Searches of Phones, Laptops at Airports Rising

Monthly Arrests at U.S.-Mexico Border Top 100,000

GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION

Police Officers Outran Misconduct, Felonies and Became Police Chiefs

Former Cop Sentenced to 9 Years for Selling Drugs Stolen by Corrupt Police Squad

WAR ON KIDS, FAMILY

Mother Arrested for Letting Child Take Lyft to School

A 9-Year-Old Boy Was Handcuffed. How Many Other Children Have Been?

After a False Accusation, Police and Child Services Forced a Family Apart for 7 Months

Man Who Kept Girl In Dog Cage, Sexually Assaulted Her Won’t Serve Prison Time

You Apparently Can’t Win A Drug War Without Sexually Abusing Kids And Murdering Parents

Arizona’s Department Of Child Safety Has A Pattern Of Sending SWAT Teams For ‘Medical Kidnapping’

SURVEILLANCE & PRIVACY

Amazon’s Facial-Recognition Technology Is Supercharging Local Police

Uber To Track Drivers And Passengers In Real-Time Using RapidSOS App

FREE SPEECH

Facebook Bans Far-Right Leaders for Being ‘Dangerous’

Offended By What Someone Said? Now You Can Report Them To Law Enforcement

Florida Man Arrested After Refusing to Remove Obscene Sticker From Window

TECHNOLOGY

Robots Edge Closer to Unloading Trucks in Amazon-Era Milestone

ECONOMY

Wealthy Elites Freak Out As Homeless Hordes Take Over West Coast Neighborhoods

RESISTANCE

Family Separation Protests Surveilled by Private Firm for DHS

Whistleblowers Such as Julian Assange Who Shed Light on Government Corruption Deserve Protection, Not Prosecution

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For Immediate Release: April 11, 2019

THE RUTHERFORD INSTITUTE

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The Rutherford Institute has denounced the U.S. government’s attempts to extradite and prosecute Wikileaks founder Julian Assange for his part in disclosing information relating to government misconduct that is within the public’s right to know.

Assange was arrested on charges of helping U.S. Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning access and leak more than 700,000 classified military documents that raise significant ethical and legal questions about the government’s war efforts abroad.

“In the absence of any real system of checks and balances among the three branches of government—i.e., with Congress, the courts and the Executive Branch working together to advance the government’s agenda at the expense of the citizenry’s constitutional rights—it is more vital than ever that the media serve as a check on the government. That is why freedom of the press is such an integral part of our First Amendment,” said constitutional attorney John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute and author of Battlefield America: The War on the American People. “America’s founders understood the importance of the press in serving as a check on the government’s power grabs, as well as maintaining an educated citizenry and a transparent government. But freedom of the press will not make much of a difference if journalists are afraid to shine a spotlight into the darkest corners of our government and pull back the veil on corruption and wrongdoing.”

MAKE THE GOVERNMENT PLAY BY THE RULES OF THE CONSTITUTION: SUPPORT THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM
The government’s prosecution of journalists and whistleblowers began under the Obama Administration and has continued under the Trump Administration. As Bloomberg News reported: “Eric Holder, attorney general under President Barack Obama, has prosecuted more government officials for alleged leaks under the World War I-era Espionage Act than all his predecessors combined, including law-and-order Republicans John Mitchell, Edwin Meese and John Ashcroft. The indictments of six individuals under that spy law have drawn criticism from those who say the president’s crackdown chills dissent, curtails a free press and betrays Obama’s initial promise to ‘usher in a new era of open government.’”

The Trump Administration has continued the Obama Administration’s crackdown on whistleblowers. Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks—a website that published secret information, news leaks, and classified media from anonymous sources—was arrested on April 11, 2019, on charges of helping U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning access and leak more than 700,000 classified military documents that portray the U.S. government and its military as reckless, irresponsible and responsible for thousands of civilian deaths.

Included among the leaked Manning materials were the Collateral Murder video (April 2010), the Afghanistan war logs (July 2010), the Iraq war logs (October 2010), a quarter of a million diplomatic cables (November 2010), and the Guantánamo files (April 2011). The Collateral Murder leak included gunsight video footage from two U.S. AH-64 Apache helicopters engaged in a series of air-to-ground attacks while air crew laughed at some of the casualties. Among the casualties were two Reuters correspondents who were gunned down after their cameras were mistaken for weapons and a driver who stopped to help one of the journalists. The driver’s two children, who happened to be in the van at the time it was fired upon by U.S. forces, suffered serious injuries.

Manning, who was jailed for seven years from 2010 to 2017 for leaking classified documents to Wikileaks, was arrested in March 2019 for refusing to testify before a grand jury about Assange, placed in solitary confinement for almost a month, and remains in prison.

The Rutherford Institute, a nonprofit civil liberties organization, defends individuals whose constitutional rights have been violated and educates the public about threats to their freedoms.

This press release is also available at www.rutherford.org.

A Badge of Shame: The Government’s War on America’s Military Veterans

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By John W. Whitehead
November 5, 2018

For soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq, coming home is more lethal than being in combat.” ― Brené Brown, research professor at the University of HoustonNot all heroes wear the uniform of war.

In the United States, however, we take particular pride in recognizing as heroes those who have served in the military.

Yet while we honor our veterans with holidays, parades, discounts at retail stores and restaurants, and endless political rhetoric about their sacrifice and bravery, we do a pitiful job of respecting their freedoms and caring for their needs once out of uniform.

Despite the fact that the U.S. boasts more than 20 million veterans who have served in World War II through the present day, the plight of veterans today is America’s badge of shame, with large numbers of veterans impoverished, unemployed, traumatized mentally and physically, struggling with depression, suicide, and marital stress, homeless, subjected to sub-par treatment at clinics and hospitals, and left to molder while their paperwork piles up within Veterans Administration offices.

Still, the government’s efforts to wage war on veterans, especially those who speak out against government wrongdoing, is downright appalling.

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Government Eyes Are Watching You: We Are All Prisoners of the Surveillance State

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The Rutherford Institute

 

By John W. Whitehead
June 18, 2018

 

 

 

“We’re run by the Pentagon, we’re run by Madison Avenue, we’re run by television, and as long as we accept those things and don’t revolt we’ll have to go along with the stream to the eventual avalanche…. As long as we go out and buy stuff, we’re at their mercy… We all live in a little Village. Your Village may be different from other people’s Villages, but we are all prisoners.”— Patrick McGoohan

First broadcast in America 50 years ago, The Prisoner—a dystopian television series described as “James Bond meets George Orwell filtered through Franz Kafka”—confronted societal themes that are still relevant today: the rise of a police state, the freedom of the individual, round-the-clock surveillance, the corruption of government, totalitarianism, weaponization, group think, mass marketing, and the tendency of humankind to meekly accept their lot in life as a prisoner in a prison of their own making.

Perhaps the best visual debate ever on individuality and freedom, The Prisoner (17 episodes in all) centers around a British secret agent who abruptly resigns only to find himself imprisoned and interrogated in a mysterious, self-contained, cosmopolitan, seemingly tranquil retirement community known only as the Village. The Village is an idyllic setting with parks and green fields, recreational activities and even a butler. More

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