Following 9/11, the Bush administration, in conjunction with Congress, expedited the passage of the Patriot Act, a wide-sweeping national security law that infringed on the civil liberties of every American in the name of fighting terror. The Fourth Amendment became a relic of the past as the government’s power to surveil and spy on its own citizens reached its peak. Individuals who shared names with persons of interest or suspected terrorists, including U.S. citizens, landed on government no-fly lists, restricting their right to freely move about the country for dubious reasons and with no due process or recourse. And even worse, many had their right to due process eviscerated when they were detained by the newly-created Department of Homeland Security and found themselves at Guantanamo Bay without even being charged with a crime.
Yet this is not the first time that American citizens, or even permanent residents for that matter, had their rights infringed upon by the government.