New Name, Same Great Organization: Civil Liberties Advocates Praise Defending Rights & Dissent

Announcing Defending Rights & Dissent!
March 25, 2017
Person with tape over their mouth. A controversial definition of anti-Semitism censors protected criticism of Israel.
Defending Rights & Dissent Condemns Anti-Whistleblower Law Passed in Arkansas
March 30, 2017


On Monday March 27, 2017 the Bill of Rights Defense Committee/Defending Dissent Foundation announced to the world that we had a new name–Defending Rights & Dissent.

When both organizations merged a year ago, we brought together our respective histories of defending civil liberties.

The Bill of Rights Defense Committee was founded in 2001 to fight the Patriot Act and the Defending Dissent Foundation was founded all the way back in 1960 to work for the abolition of the House Un-American Activities Committee.

Both organizations were involved in the intervening years opposing violations of civil liberties whenever, wherever they popped up. We worked to propose model ordinances to limit racial profiling, to rein in the FBI’s spying on dissent, and to end torture, detention without trial, and mass surveillance.

In short, together both groups have been Defending Rights & Dissent for decades.

As such, Defending Rights & Dissent is the perfect name for BORDC/DDF. It is, after all who we are and what we do.

We are humbled by the outpouring of support from our longtime allies since Monday. Individuals diverse as, CIA torture whistleblower and Patriot Award recipient John Kiriakou, Cato policy analyst Pat Eddington, journalist Norman Solomon, and Center for Media Justice Director Malkia A. Cyril took to social media to welcome our new name.

We also received supportive tweets from organizations we’ve worked with over the years, such X-Lab, Palestine Legal, National Lawyers Guild, and US Campaign for Palestine Rights.