Defending Rights & Dissent

July 10, 2024

Protest Under Fire: Summer 2024

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
July 3, 2024

Reflection and Celebration of Assange’s Freedom: Dispatches from those covering the case from the start

On Monday, July 1, Defending Rights & Dissent and Assange Defense Committee hosted an online event, which can be viewed here.  Matthew Hoh is a former Marine who resigned from the State Department in 2008 to protest the escalation of
July 2, 2024

The Supreme Court’s granting of sweeping immunity to presidents is flagrantly undemocratic and dangerous

On July 1, 2024, the Supreme Court released a shocking 6-3 ruling in Trump v. United States. Special Counsel Jack Smith brought criminal charges against former President Donald Trump, alleging that, by seeking to overturn the legitimate results of the
June 24, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent Welcomes Julian Assange’s Freedom, Opposes The Government’s Abuse of the Espionage Act

Defending Rights & Dissent welcomes the news that Julian Assange will go free for the first time in over a decade. For over five years, Assange has been confined to Belmarsh Prison in London, as he contested his extradition to
June 21, 2024

DRAD Submits Report to UN on Constriction of Civic Space Around Pro-Palestine Activism

Defending Rights & Dissent frequently lends our expertise to international bodies evaluating American adherence to international norms surrounding freedom of expression, defending civil space against state repression, and other related topics. On June 21, 2024, we submitted the following testimony
June 6, 2024

11 Years After the Snowden Revelations: It’s Time to Fix the Espionage Act

We owe courageous truthtellers that much. Eleven years ago Americans learned the dirty secrets of the NSA’s illegal surveillance of US citizens – thanks to a courageous whistleblower, Edward Snowden. Yet, because of the anti-democratic, free-speech-killing Espionage Act, Snowden is
May 30, 2024

Defending Rights & Dissent Stands Against McCarthyite Attacks on Center for Security, Race and Rights

Congressional supporters of Israel’s war on Gaza are waging McCarthyite attacks on the Rutgers University Center for Center for Security, Race and Rights (the Center), and its Director, Professor Sahar Aziz. Abusing their positions on Congressional committees, these witch hunters
May 25, 2024

The Cost of Police Violence and Mayhem: A Report on Police Misconduct during the George Floyd Protests

On May 25, 2020, Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for over nine minutes. Tens of millions of people took to the streets, not only in outrage, but with a fervent hope that
May 24, 2024

DRAD’s Chip Gibbons Appears on Democracy Now! to Break News of Assange Legal Victory

On May 20, 2024, the UK High Court granted imprisoned journalist Julian Assange a rare legal victory. Our Policy Director Chip Gibbons was in the courtroom. He had been credentialed to cover the proceedings for Jacobin. When the High Court
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