Worthy Christian News » US News » Judgment Day for the U.S. Surveillance State
(Worthy News)-- Last week saw the first response to the issue by an appeals court outside the country’s secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court: The court ruled that the U.S. government's long-held justification for the National Security Agency's (NSA) bulk collection of Americans' phone records and other data is illegal under the USA Patriot Act, Newsweek reported.
Specifically, the New York federal court found that the government's broad interpretation of a provision of the Patriot Act, Section 215, did not provide sufficient legal cover for its sprawling surveillance program, which scoops up and stores for up to five years the “metadata” of Americans’ phone calls, such as who they call, how frequently and for how long. “The statutes to which the government points have never been interpreted to authorize anything approaching the breadth of the sweeping surveillance at issue here,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit's three-judge panel said. It added: "Congress cannot reasonably be said to have ratified the program of which many members of Congress—and all members of the public—were not aware."
In other words, when Congress first passed the Patriot Act in 2001 and reauthorized it in 2011, it had no idea what it was agreeing to. --[wp_colorbox_media url="http://www.newsweek.com/judgment-day-us-surveillance-state-330761" type="iframe" hyperlink="Source"]