Saturday, March 3, 2012

CAIR Action Alert

Action: Ask Congress to Ban Indefinite Military Detention

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 2/28/2012) -- CAIR is urging American Muslims and other people of conscience to contact their elected representatives and ask them to support legislation that reaffirms the due process rights of all Americans, repairing the damage done to the U.S. Constitution by the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA).

On Wednesday, February 29, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing, called "The Due Process Guarantee Act: Banning Indefinite Detention of Americans," which marks the Senate's first attempt to address the NDAA's unconstitutional indefinite detention provisions.

On December 31, the NDAA was signed into law by President Obama. The law authorizes the U.S. military to indefinitely detain Americans and others suspected of terrorism without charge or trial.

SEE: CAIR Troubled By New Detention Law, Despite President's 'Reservations'

Leading members of Congress and civil rights organizations consider the NDAA's detention powers to be unconstitutional and an overreach of the president's authority. The NDAA's detention requirements disregard the Fifth Amendment guarantee of due process for "all persons" and the Sixth Amendment right to a fair and speedy trial.

In addition, the law essentially repeals the Posse Comitatus Act, which limits the use of the military to enforce laws domestically.

During the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, committee members will consider the Due Process Guarantee Act (S. 2003), sponsored by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA).

The Due Process Guarantee Act reaffirms that the government cannot indefinitely detain American citizens or lawful residents inside the U.S. without charge or trial. However, the act does not reaffirm the rights of Americans detained overseas, undocumented residents and foreign nationals in U.S. custody.

In January CAIR welcomed the introduction of the Due Process Guarantee Act, but cautioned that the act does not extend to protecting the rights of all persons and needs to be amended.

"As a community we should join together in urging congress to adopt legislation that reaffirms the rights of all people," said CAIR Government Affairs Coordinator Robert McCaw. "We must reject living in a state where the military has the authority to arrest and indefinitely detain individuals."

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be polite and respectful.)

1. Contact your members of Congress by clicking here.

On the right side of the page, enter your ZIP Code. On the resulting page, click the names of your elected representatives. Click the "contact" tab on the resulting page for your officials' phone numbers.

2. Contact members of the Senate Judiciary Committee by clicking here.

Talking points:

  • I am deeply concerned that the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 became law.
  • I believe that it is unconstitutional for the military to arrest or indefinitely detain any person, stripping them of their right to a fair a speedy trail and hearing the charges brought against them.
  • I urge you to support and cosponsor legislation that repeals Sections 1021 and 1022 of the NDAA and reaffirms the due process rights of "all persons," as outlined by the U.S. Constitution. That includes American citizens at home and abroad, documented and undocumented residents, and persons in U.S. custody.
  • I believe that the U.S. Constitution provides all the necessary tools to safeguard the nation from enemies both foreign and domestic.

3. Tweet your members of Congress by clicking here.

On the left side of the page, enter your ZIP Code. On the resulting page, click the names of your elected representatives. Sign into your Twitter account, and tweet: Protect our constitutional rights! Support the due process rights of all people. Repeal Sections 1021& 1022 of the #NDAA #CAIR

4. Inform your friends and family by forwarding this alert to at least five other people and positing it on Facebook and Twitter. Tell them you took action and ask them to do the same.

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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