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Saperstein: By limiting one of the Patriot Act’s most troubling provisions the court has affirmed a commitment to protecting Americans from unduly invasive practices by the government with little oversight or means of recourse.
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Washington, September 7, 2007 - In response to U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero’s ruling striking down the Patriot Act’s provision allowing the FBI to issue national security letters to internet and telephone companies, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement:
Americans have come to accept the realities of living in a post- September 11th world, including the need to create a new balance between security and the protection of civil liberties. Yesterday’s ruling in New York District Court striking down the FBI’s almost unfettered access to communications records through national security letters (NSLs) is an important step in clarifying that line. By limiting one of the Patriot Act’s most troubling provisions the court has affirmed a commitment to protecting Americans from unduly invasive practices by the government with little oversight or means of recourse.
The Reform Movement has long been committed to providing law enforcement with the tools that are crucial to combat terrorism, but at the same time, and with the same vigor, we are committed to protecting the freedoms and values that have allowed liberty to thrive in America. We commend the court’s ruling and will continue to work toward an America where both our security and our rights are protected.