Defending Rights & Dissent

May 1, 2024

DRAD Statement: As a free speech organization, we condemn campus crackdowns

Defending Rights & Dissent condemns the crackdown taking place across campuses in the United States. Across the country, we have seen protests calling for a ceasefire and end to Israel’s brutal war in Gaza. Increasingly, many of  these protests have
April 23, 2024

Letter to Columbia President Minouche Shafik: Political expression concerns on campus

Here’s our letter: April 22, 2024 Dear President Shafik, Defending Rights & Dissent is a national civil liberties organization dedicated to protecting the right of political expression. We are deeply concerned about recent actions you have taken that jeopardize the
April 12, 2024

Statement: House Votes to Expand Warrantless Surveillance

Today, the House betrayed the American people and US Constitution by voting to allow the FBI to continue violating a fundamental tenet of US law: that searches require a warrant. Today’s vote extends unconstitutional surveillance and represents the largest expansion
April 12, 2024

“There’s many ways to assassinate a journalist”: Journalists reflect on Assange’s fifth year in Belmarsh Prison

On April 11, 2024, DRAD Policy Director Chip Gibbons joined Stefania Maurizi, Abby Martin, and Chris Hedges to mark five years of Julian Assange’s detention in Belmarsh Prison in the UK. On the grim anniversary, the panel of journalists reflected
March 27, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent joins rapid-response panel following UK Assange decision

On March 26, 2024, less than 12 hours after the UK High Court’s decision, Defending Rights & Dissent Policy Director Chip Gibbons joined an expert panel to deliver rapid-response analysis. The panel featured Chip alongside other First Amendment and human
March 26, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent Statement on UK High Court Ruling Granting Assange Partial Appeal Rights

On Tuesday March 26, 2024, the United Kingdom High Court of Justice granted Julian Assange a partial right to appeal his extradition to the US. For nearly five years, the United States has been seeking the WikiLeaks founder’s extradition to
March 21, 2024

Protest Under Fire: Spring 2024 Edition

Protest is the voice of the people.  It’s a powerful tool to force confrontation and shake up the status quo. From writing letters to protesting in the streets, from occupations to boycotts, our democracy demands that people have the freedom
March 20, 2024

TikTok Bans Deny First Amendment Right to Receive Information

On March 13, 2024, the US House of Representatives voted 352 to 65, in favor of the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act. The bill prohibits the distribution of or providing web hosting services that enable the distribution
February 28, 2024

Urgent Congressional Briefing: Press Freedom & the Assange Prosecution

On February 26, 2024, Defending Rights & Dissent convened a historic–and urgent–briefing on Capitol Hill on press freedom and the prosecution of Julian Assange. The briefing featured Agnès Callamard, Secretary General of Amnesty International, Jodie Ginsberg, the CEO of Committee
February 27, 2024

Statement on the CFAA Indictment of Journalist Tim Burke

On February 22, 2024, the Department of Justice unsealed the indictment of journalist Timothy Burke under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). The indictment, which concerns Burke’s access to Fox News unaired segments and sports news, wields the CFAA
February 16, 2024

We stopped FISA 702 for now… But it’s a wild story how we got here

Defending Rights & Dissent has called on our supporters and grassroots activists repeatedly over the past few months to call on Congress to rein in mass surveillance. Your advocacy made a huge difference! Together, we’ve fended off attempts to extend
February 12, 2024

25 Orgs Tell GA Prosecutors: Anti-surveillance tools should not be evidence of criminal intent

In early motions in the Cop City RICO trial, it appears the prosecution is trying to argue that use of a “burner phone” is in itself evidence of criminal intent. Guardrails on government surveillance are central to our constitutional rights,
February 9, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent Condemns Espionage Act Double Standard, Calls for Reform of Antiquated and Unjust Law

On February 8, 2024 Special Counsel Robert K. Hur’s report into President Joseph Biden’s handling of classified documents was released. Although the special counsel found that Biden had willfully retained national defense information, he did not recommend charging the President.
January 30, 2024

Speaker Emertia Pelosi Calls for FBI Investigation of Ceasefire Protesters; DRAD sends letter

On January 28, 2024, Nancy Pelosi called on the FBI to investigate protesters calling for a ceasefire in Gaza for connections to Russia, saying “For them to call for a ceasefire is Mr. Putin’s message…I think some of these protesters
January 12, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent Unequivocally Condemns US Bombing of Yemen

Yesterday, the Biden Administration violated Article I of the United States Constitution and the War Powers Act by launching military action against targets in Yemen without Congressional approval. Although the War Powers Act allows for the President to use force