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National Security vs. Civil Liberty: How do you feel about the Patriot Act?

After Sept. 11, 2001, the federal government decided that restrictions on law enforcement in the United States, especially restrictions on domestic spying, had gone too far following the turbulent 1960s and '70s. President Bush and members of his administration said that the terrorist attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. proved that the United States was ill-prepared to cope with terrorist threats within the country.

The Patriot Act

The USA Patriot Act was signed into law on Oct. 26, 2001, citing the need for more cooperation among all levels of security, along with broader powers for law enforcement personnel. Police and other departments were given wider preemptive authority and encouraged to share information. The goal: a safer America in times of international turmoil.

But as the years have passed and the terrorist attacks seem further away, people have begun to question whether too many restrictions on law enforcement were rolled back. Recent news that President Bush has authorized the wiretapping of some phone calls in the United States without court orders upset many. While the government has defended these actions by saying that only suspected terrorists were targeted, some citizens are citing them as further examples of civil liberties being eroded by the Patriot Act.

Many provisions of the Patriot Act were due to expire at the end of this year, and President Bush pushed hard to get them renewed before January. But some congressional leaders, concerned about civil liberties being stripped by the act, refused, pushing instead for a limited extension while those problems are addressed. The U.S. Congress reached a last-minute compromise in late December to extend the Patriot Act for five weeks while lawmakers work out their disagreements.

The Patriot Act has 16 provisions that give the government extensive surveillance and legal powers to use against suspected terrorists. They range from the authority to intercept electronic communication to the ability of law enforcement agencies to delay notice of the execution of a warrant. In other words, under special circumstances, suspected terrorists may be subject to searches without ever being notified.

Proponents for Renewal

Proponents of the act suggest that its provisions are ensuring a safer United States. They say citizens should remain focused on the issue of safety, the central point of the Patriot Act. "Any suggestion of civil liberties violations is an effort to shift the focus of the discussion away from the facts," Justice Department spokeswoman Tasia Scolinos said. "There have been no verified civil liberties violations filed against the Patriot Act, period."

Those in favor of the Patriot Act note that no major terrorist attack has occurred on U.S. soil since the bill’s passage. In addition, several terrorist plots have been foiled both here and abroad. President Bush declares the Patriot act to be “essential to fighting the war on terror and preventing our enemies from striking America again.”

Opponents

Opponents of the act and its renewal say that the safety of the United States is not affected by the Patriot Act and that the cost to our freedom is too high. They are led by organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and many congressional leaders. Senator Russ Feingold, who has opposed the Patriot Act since its inception in 2001, has argued that the Patriot Act threatens the privacy and personal freedoms of every citizen, despite claims that only suspected terrorists are affected by the law. “The privacy of law-abiding Americans is at stake, along with their confidence in their government," Feingold said in February 2005. "Congress should act to protect our privacy and reassure our citizens."

What do you think?

Should the Patriot Act be renewed? Are there provisions of the act that you think should be removed? Do you feel safer with this law in effect? How much of your privacy are you willing to sacrifice in order to be safer from the threat of terrorism in the United States? Join the discussion and let us know!
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Comments
6/3/2014
Plainfield, New Jersey
Jazmin Freites
Falcon Middle School
The Patriot Act invades citizens rights and freedoms. I one is willing to give up essential libertes derserve neither freedom or libertes like of what Benjamin Franklin said.

5/29/2014
louisiana
pablo
mrs devil
I think there should be more restrictions put on the patriot act and how it is used. In theory it is a very good idea and helps America become a safer place. In actuality, it is used to take the average americans rights to privacy. I dont know how the act should be restricted but it should. It definatley should not be repealed, however.

5/22/2014
Washington
Nicola
PLMS
We need the PATRIOT Act. The only successful major terrorist attack since 9/11 were the Boston Bombings and that was 12 years since 9/11. The PATRIOT Act has stopped over 30 plots and is saving lives. Sure, we loss our privacy but I'd rather be alive with no privacy than dead.

5/20/2014
kentucky
SED
AB
i think that this act is great!!

12/19/2013
Utah
Aja
Vista Heights
We never actually know how much information the government is gathering because they don't tell us, which usually means that they are collecting too much.

12/18/2013
Boston, Massachusetts
Bobby the Boss
LMS
The government watching us is a HUGE infringement upon our rights granted to us by the constitution. We have the right to freedom of speech, but if you speak out against the government they start watching you! Majorly annoying and creepy.

12/17/2013
phila
jessica
cook wiss
the patriot act is stupid. that is all i have to say.

12/13/2013
kapaa
Elvis
kapaa
First of all, the patriot act was enacted not to protect but to control all us citizens. second, the 911 terrorist attack was a us government plot involving the oil rich shahs and the 2 percenters who control all commerce and keep a stranglehold on their massive amounts of gold. i know it sounds crazy but, think about it, basically 911 and the passing of the patriot act allowed the government to w have the power to do

12/10/2013
Texas
Rabboni
sdf sdf
Russ Feingold was right. The personal freedoms of every citizen are at stake. The recent NSA phone scandal has shown that, given some leeway, the industrial military complex will attempt to increase its power

8/7/2013
Kentucky
Max
Dunbar High
Russ Feingold was right. The personal freedoms of every citizen are at stake. The recent NSA phone scandal has shown that, given some leeway, the industrial military complex will attempt to increase its power

5/7/2013
Texas
Nuseka
Barbers hill high
Instead of taking our rights away, governmental law-makers need to limit immigration and visits, plus make background checks upon all to come in US. Meaning, hold all people three months from entering US to make full back-ground checks.. Better to do this than making US citizens go through losing rights and liberty of freedom...

12/9/2012
California
Melissa
Monache
I don't mind the patriot act. It's ensuring national security and I don't feel an invasion of privacy from it so its fine.

11/26/2012
Connecticut
Jenni
Ledyard High School
The infringement of some for the safety of all. The patriot act was created to protect America after the 9/11 attack. Personally the fact that some rights are infringed apon are fine by me, as long as we are safe from any terroristic acts. Think about it, are your rights more important that peoples lives?

4/12/2012
CHARLOTTE
Krisha
Phillip O. Berry
The act should not be renewed. I have nothing to hide but I also have nothing I want to share. I don't want to be watch. I can't walk down the street knowing that there many people watching every little thing I do. I am being watched because I might be suspect as an criminal when I really am innocent. I would feel unsafe rather than safe. You can keep our country safe WITHOUT invading the privacy of citizens. If someone might hack into the gov't database, then all my critical info would be out there in all the public for everyone to see. I might lose my identity. Security should have been as important during the 9/11 as much as it is now. So why do we all of the sudden need all of these new security guidelines and acts? The constitution gives us the right to have privacy and the gov't is going against the constitution and taking this right away from people. This is a democratic gov't, so why is the gov't trying to gain control of the people's lives? Didn't we fight to have such freedoms and rights? so why are we going back to the past?

3/20/2012
greensboro
lanyia
archer elementary
to have no fights and not having a lot of people in jail

6/5/2006

Joe T.
Springfield High School, Springfield, PA
Personally, I don't have a problem with the Patriot Act. For one, no one in my family, who I know of, communicates with anyone in the Middle East or even abroad for that matter. It's not like I have anything to hide anyway. I would give up a little privacy to a government that I don't even know personally, to save the lives of thousands of Americans in a terrorist attack. It should be a sacrifice any American should make, and I think that they forget what they could potentially save.

4/10/2006

Jolene
Roosevelt HS, San Antonio
The Patriot Act is an infringement on rights guaranteed to me by the Constitution, the document that our country was founded on. The Patriot Act is also discriminatory because it stereotypes people. The US is looking to reduce terrorism and it is more than likely that they would survey the personal lives of Arab Americans, foreigners, and the urban poor. I also feel it was renewed because many members of Congress did not read the document and voted for it on the basis of not wanting to appear unpatriotic.

4/7/2006

Collin
Amador Valley High School, Pleasanton, California
I think that the Patriot Act should be renewed. I personally am okay with the government having access to my personal files and documents. By granting them the ability to look further into people’s files, and investigate suspicious people, it could prevent any problem. I agree with Aubrey in the fact that we are forfeiting some of our individual freedoms for this Act. But to me, the pay off is worth it. I was reading online an article from the ALCU about the patriot act, and they went on to say how there are a few rough edges still looming. So this, like many other things, isn’t perfect, but it is still a good idea to have this in place, and hammer out minor details once it is there. To me, our personal protection and safety comes before our privacy. I would hate to realize later that this Act could have lead to the prevention of another attack. Like you hear over and over again, 'better safe than sorry.' The senate must agree with this point of view because of the 89-11 vote to sign the Patriot Act into office. March 9th marked the day that it was officially signed in by President Bush.

4/6/2006

Aubrey B
Springfield High School
It’s true that the Patriot Act infringes upon our individual freedoms given to us for no other reason than we are United States citizens. I believe that the Patriot Act should be renewed and that it is something our country needs. Following September 11, 2001 our country demanded more protection, even if it meant giving up civil liberties. Now that it has been a few years people are beginning to think that the protection being supplied to us is an inconvenience and against our constitutional rights. Who cares if the government is listening in on conversations you’re making unless you have something to hide? I feel safer because of the Patriot Act. The government isn’t trying to take away our freedoms; they’re trying to make sure we’re safe and that nothing like September 11, 2001 happens again. The government isn’t going to listen in on every call you make, it’d be too expensive. They’re only taping the phone lines of people they have suspicions about. So in my opinion the Patriot Act is a necessary evil. We demand protection but want it at no cost; our country needs to learn that nothing is free.

4/4/2006

Matt M.
Rowlett High School. Rowlett, TX
The Patriot Act is a direct violation of our rights as individuals fortunate enough to be born in the U.S., and most people are volunteering this sacrifice. If we give up our rights now, we may never get them back. No matter what the situation is, everyone in this country is entitled to the right of privacy, and, unless they forfeit that right by breaking the law, they should keep it. Along with being wrong, the Patriot Act is also very vague. It ends with the words, 'and for other purposes.' The government can legally invade our homes for any purpose according to this act. Our government is our provider, and, as such, should protect our rights at all costs. Never surrender your rights or you will never get them back.

4/4/2006

Brittany M.
Rowlett H.S. Rowlett, TX
Yes, the Patriot Act makes our country a little safer. Benjamin Franklin said that "those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety," and I must say that I agree. Giving up liberty for safety is a neverending process. The more we give, the more they take. Eventually, there will be nothing left to give.

4/4/2006

Jerica G
Rowlett High School, Rowlett
Protecting our country from terrorism is one thing, but to be imprisoned by these laws that are supposed to protect us opens up a whole different issue. I do not believe that our freedom and privacy should be invaded just for our protection. We can be protected from external harm without having "Big Brother" watch each individuals every move. The Patriot Act should be reformed and greatly modified in order for it to be looked upon justly.

4/4/2006

Katy H.
Rowlett High School. Rowlett, TX
All throughout life you have to make sacrifices, and I personally feel that the Patriot Act is a sacrifice that most people are willing to make. I'd much rather feel safe in my own country and just not have quite as much privacy, then not feel nearly as safe and have a little more privacy. Unless you are hiding something from the government, then this act isn't harming you, and it's not an infringment on your constitutional rights if you willingly give them up. And, I in no way feel that you should give up your rights willingly unless it is for a worthy cause; and quite frankly, being safer is a good cause to give up some of my privacy in my book. Besides, I have nothing to hide from the government, and as long as you aren't out doing shady things, neither should you.

4/4/2006

Conrad J.
Rowlett High School, Rowlett, TX
The essence of the Patriot Act is good because its there to protect us from terrorists and any type of harm that may come upon us. However I believe that the Patriot Act violates the rights our historic leaders fought for and I feel the provisions made in the Act should be overlooked and questioned.

3/28/2006

Rachel
Lackawanna Trail High School, Factoryville
We believe that this act should stay in progress. Especially because it is protecting the people of this country and the country itself from terrorism. We feel much safer not having to live with the phobia of being under seige. It should be renewed not removed. The cost of civil freedom is more important than our lives? I don't think so. What if our country was overtaken and we no longer had any free nation at all, what then?

3/22/2006

Keith
Springfield High School, Springfield, PA
I think the patriot act could be a good thing for the United States. I think this would make a lot more Americans feel safer and it would provide more safety because the government has more control over what's going on around them. I think this would be a good idea to keep it so that we can cut down on terrorism because we have already been attacked and could be again with all of the threats we receive. I support the decision to keep the patriot act. I support the fact that the government could listen in on conversations and other necessary measures because any American who is against it most likely has something to hide because otherwise they would be for it. The government isn’t trying to listen to what the neighborhood dog is doing; they are trying to listen for terrorist activity. I believe this is for the good of the American people.

3/20/2006

Hunter
Amador Valley High School, Pleasanton, California
After September 11, 2001, the government passed the Patriot Act for the purpose of allowing government and police officials more freedoms to investigate and keep an eye on possible terrorists without permission from a court. The act allowed the government to wire-tap phones and listen to conversations of possible terrorists to be more prepared and try to stop another terrorist attack. Feingold said 'The privacy of law-abiding Americans is at stake, along with their confidence in their government.' The Act says though that they are just targeting possible terrorists, so unless you are planning to attack the United States then you have nothing to worry about. Gloria G from Texas says, 'I think that the Patriot Act should not be renewed because we don't want our civil liberties to be stripped away from us. It might not even make us feel safe from everything if everybody is being under suspicion of being a terrorist.' I disagree with this completley; why would you not want to make the U.S. a safer place? Sometimes your rights and freedoms have to be put on the back burner to help protect an entire country. This Act was approved on October 26, 2001, and since then there have been no terrorist attacks and ones that were planned had been found out and aborted. This shows that the Patriot Act is obviously working and should be renewed.

3/19/2006

Danny
Amador Valley High School, Pleasanton, California
I completely disagree with JorgeD_B1. THe Patriot act simply does not make people feel safer, it makes them feel more violated and even more susceptible to unecessary searches and seizures. Under that Patriot Act, there are certain sections that suggest gag orders and national security letters. People do not feel safe when you can potentially get an NSL in the mail and are not allowed to speak about it. 'There have been no verified civil liberties violations filed against the Patriot Act, period.' That is also false. The American Civil Liberties Union constantly finds and files suits against civil rights violations under the Patriot Act. The Patriot Act was passed roughly a month and a half after the 9/11 attacks, and many provisions and sections that have been added to it have been on must-pass bills in Congress. 'Congress should act to protect our privacy and reassure our citizens.' There are '16 provisions of the act that give the government extensive surveillance and legal powers to use against suspected terrorists.' However, there is no distinct classification of a suspected terrorist, and we are rarely updated on the numbers of terrorists the act has impeded. Until our civil liberties are further protected by Congress, I oppose the Patriot Act.

3/17/2006

mike a
Amador Valley High School, Pleasanton, California
Gerald D makes a good point in saying that the government has too much control over us these days. The Bush administration has taken national security to a whole new level where he has made people's private lives his own business and using terrorism threats as leverage. I understand that he is looking to protect the U.S. citizens from terror but in doing so he has pushed the government and their power to survey our lives at leisure. 'Any suggestion of civil liberties violations is an effort to shift the focus of the discussion away from the facts,' Justice Department spokeswoman Tasia Scolinos said. This is a completely false statement because the fact is that Americans feel that their personal liberties are being infringed upon by a plan that hasn’t proven to continue to have purpose in the present day. We need to get rid of the Patriot act and restore the core values we have as Americans. The trade-off of civil liberties for national security has become increasingly more lopsided as our civil liberties become more diminished and the threat of terrorist attacks becomes decreases. 'The Patriot Act has 16 provisions that give the government extensive surveillance and legal powers to use against suspected terrorists.' With this in action there is no telling whom the government could survey because there is not a set criteria for who is a 'suspected terrorist.' Until they gain substantial evidence that Americans lives are in clear and present danger I will remain against the Patriot Act.

3/2/2006

Jessica F.
Springfield High School, Springfield, PA
The Patriot Act is a very controversial topic. There are good sides and bad sides to this act, in my opinion. I think that the patriot act is a very good way to keep many of today’s most dangerous terrorists out of the United States and it also allows many of people like me who like it in the United States to feel safe and free from any attacks. On the other hand the patriot act is sort of an invasion of our privacy and rights. I do not think that the government should have complete and total power over what goes on in my home. I feel that my freedom is more important than my safety in a way. I don’t want to be completely safe from harm and at the same time have to watch my every single move because I may be accused of having something to do with some sort of terrorist activity. This act may be a good thing to be put into place, but I think that congress should also make sure that this does not upset U.S citizens and invade anyone’s privacy.

3/1/2006

JorgeD_B1
Garland High School, Garland, TX
The Patriot Act should be renewed because in a way it makes many citizens feel much safer in their everyday lives. It is true that some provisions of the Act could be removed because they flirt too much with people's civil liberties, but the Patriot Act as a whole should not be done away with.

3/1/2006

Mike A
Springfield High School Springfield, PA
The Patriot Act is a great thing even though it goes against some civil liberties that U.S. citizens have. The American people are much safer because of it. If you have nothing to hide then what is the big deal about the government looking for terrorists this way? As an American citizen I feel much safer knowing that the government is finding terrorists this way. Don't get me wrong, it does go against our first amendment but if my life is going to be that much more protected than I am all for it.

2/27/2006

Mabelyn
Arts High/Newark
Even though the U.S. Patriot Act is going against the first amendment, I believe American lives are worth it!! Don't you think? We have practically been in danger ever since the attack on the World Trade Center, so our expectations of another terrorist attack are very high. Therefore, it is vital for the U.S. to raise its levels of protection.

2/27/2006

Jessica K.
Arts High, Newark, NJ
The Patriot Act may be a violation of people's rights, but I think it is a neccessary step to protect us from terrorism. If the government listens to our phone calls or taps into our computer or whatever, it doesn't matter, that's if you are not doing anything wrong and don't have anything to hide. They are looking for terrorists, so why should you worry?

2/27/2006

sami
Episcopal School of Dallas, Dallas, TX
I think the patriot act should not be renewed. It is a direct violation of the rights granted to U.S. citizens through the first ammendment, and it threatens the privacy of every citizen. Having the patriot act in effect does not make me feel any safer, it simply makes me realize that my rights as a citizen are being violated for no reason at all. The provisions of the patriot act simply lead to more time being wasted by the government that could be spent on more effective methods of combating terrorism, and preventing another potential terrorist attack in the U.S. Instead, the government chooses to invade the privacy of its citizens, thereby making the citizens less confident in their government altogether.

2/27/2006

Ali
Episcopal School of Dallas, Dallas, TX
I do not believe that the Patriot Act should be renewed. I feel that it infringes on the rights of U.S. citizens and blatantly violates the first amendment. It violates every individual’s privacy, and the Patriot Act contradicts all that the first amendment stands for. The Patriot Act does not make me feel any safer, and I’m sure the government can spend more time and money on more efficient techniques to battle terrorism without hurting citizens' privacy. American citizens shouldn’t have to worry that their government will take away their rights, because then what has happened to what America stood for?

2/24/2006

Brittney G.
South Garland High School, Garland, TX
For one, America is known for its civil liberties and freedom, so what sense would it make to take some of them away to make Americans safer? Not only that, for some people, stripping their civil liberties from them could make them feel as if they have no freedom, which goes against everything America stands for. So I truly believe that they should not renew the act.

2/24/2006

Jessica
South Garland High School Garland
Yes, I believe the Patriot Act should be renewed for the fact that it has done a great job since our tragedy of 9/11. I understand some Americans feel like it interferes with our rights and liberties but if it helps to keep our nation safe from another tragedy than I say keep it up. If anything were to be revised I'd say the Act was just fine! There have been some terrorist threats here in the U.S. lately and their plans have been spoiled because we got to them in time. If it's keeping terrorists out and safety on my famiy, friends, nation, and me then I'd say keep us safe and I pray we never have a tragedy like the one before. Our Nation might be taking some crazy measures just for our safety but I'm glad they are. Invading more Americans' privacy is what we need to get terrorists out and to keep us safe.

2/21/2006

Aylese A
Bodine High School, Philadelphia, PA
I think that the patriot act should be renewed because I think that since the world has become such an unsafe place and since the United States is trageted with such terrorism ,the Patriot Act is just what we need to keep our country safe in these times. The patriot act keeps me feeling safer and even if it means longer lines at the airport i still think that it is the best way to stay safe from terrorism and other types of violence.

2/20/2006

Josh K.
Springfield High School, Springfield, PA
The Patriot Act should not be renewed. The Patriot Act threatens the privacy and personal freedoms of every citizen. If the government has reason to suspect and spy on an individual, then they certainly should have enough cause to get a warrant and legally and fairly investigate that person.

2/16/2006

Kevin D.
Stroudsburg Junior High School, Stroudsburg, PA
I agree with Shelby G.: The government should not be allowed to spy on everyone. Further, the power to put forth such a program is given to Congress, not the President.

2/10/2006

Phik G.
South Garland High School
The president is trying to renew the Patriot Act to give the U.S. more saftey toward terrorism. On Oct. 26, 2001 the U.S. Patriot Act was signed. President Bush got the Act renewed by arguing that we need it. The president believes that this will keep America safer at home and across seas.

2/9/2006

Roland S.
Episcopal School of Dallas, Dallas, TX
Holding true to the founding ideas of this country is more important than any temporary terrorist anxiety. As long as there is no real evidence of the Patriot Act actually hindering terrorist operations it should not be passed again. In the past, during the World Wars and Red Scares there have been similar suspensions of civil rights, all of which caused nothing but false accusations and did not help the American cause.

2/8/2006

Shelby G.
Stroudsburg JHS, Stroudsburg, PA
I think the Patriot Act is too broad. It gives the government the ability to essentially spy on anyone. They should narrow down who they can keep tabs on by only looking at suspected national threats and their relations.

2/7/2006

Gloria G.
South Garland High, Garland TX
I think that the Patriot Act should not be renewed because we don't want our civil liberties to be stripped away from us. It might not even make us feel safe from everything if everybody is being under suspicion of being a terrorist.

2/7/2006

Clark
South Garland HS, Garland, TX
The Patriot Act is used to invade privacy, plain and simple. Therefore I am not in favor of it nor its renewal.

2/7/2006

Jillian
South Garland HS, Garland, TX
I believe that the renewal is a postive thing, and I also think that it is helping America by finding the enemies within our country.

2/6/2006

RonR_B1
Garland, Tx. Garland High
I believe security is a matter of national importance and that it shouldn't be taken lightly. But also, we shouldn't have every little scribble that we make notify the government. We should still have some civil liberties.

2/3/2006

Miles
Allderdice, Pittsburgh
I think that the Patriot act should be abolished because it violates the right we are given in the 4th amendment. I think that we should vote to get rid of this amendment.

2/1/2006

Amanda
Parkland, Allentown, PA
Renew it! The Patriot Act is hardly an attack on the average everyday Joe. In fact, most people will most likely never experience the repercussions of the renewal. The Act is very specific to those suspected of terrorist attacks. It seems to me that only the terrorists should feel threatened by the Act. For the rest of us, just let it be.

2/1/2006

PChen
Parkland High School, Allentown, PA
As long as the Patriot Act respects the rights of the people and follows the Constitution, it should be allowed. However, as soon as it violates either of the above, then it has overstepped. There are other ways to fight terrorism that don't involve stripping the rights of innocent people.

2/1/2006

Nina W.
Parkland High School, Allentown, PA
I agree with P. Chen, she states 'While our country's attempt to protect its people from terrorism has good motives, the Patriot Act violates so many of the basic rights and liberties stated in the Constitution. If the Patriot Act goes against the basic backbone of America--freedom--it therefore should not be renewed.' The Patriot Act is contradicting what the Constitution stands for, when our forefathers made sure that our civil liberties would be protected. We do not need an act that will take away our civil liberties-- if they take that away from the citizens of the U.S., what will they take away next?

1/27/2006

Kadeem T.
Arts High School, Newark NJ
I feel as though the Patriot Act is not a good thing. As someone stated, it really goes against the first admendment. Everyone would be in your business causing a lack of privacy.

1/27/2006

Marquis H.
Arts High (Newark, NJ)
I really don't think that renewing the Patriot Act would change anything. Terrorists will still find a way to attack whomever they want to. Just because the security levels are higher doesn't mean that nothing will happen. I believe we will still be attacked no matter if the security level is high or not. So i think that it shouldn't be renewed because it wouldn't change anything.

1/26/2006

Kirsten B.
Bodine High School, Philadelphia, PA
I feel that the Patriot Act is a violation of our privacy as 1) people and 2) Americans. It invades the comfort of our homes and other safe havens. I believe that the law being in effect does make most Americans feel safer because the government is taking the time to monitor various sources of commuication to protect us. However, I do believe there are other methods that can be used to protect us as Americans.

1/26/2006

tiffanyg_ b1
Garland H.S. Garland, TX
i think that the patriot act is a good thing!

1/25/2006

Angelica
Arts High, Newark, NJ
I think that the Patriot Act goes against the 1st amendment. The act allows for physical search, electronic surveillance, trap and trace devices. Everyone in the U.S. basically has no privacy. I know they are putting the country's security above all, but our president needs to mind his own business so that there is no need to interfere with the natural rights of the people in the U.S.

1/25/2006

Patrick
Nimitz HS, Irving
While I feel that in a time of war it is neither appropriate nor effective to loosen the constraint of the people, to take 'protection' to the level that we have allowed is slight overkill. As a nation developed with the best interest of the people at heart I believe that we have the right to talk on the phone without the fear of a man in a suit taking notes on what I am saying to my girlfriend or my mom. I have done nothing wrong and, as such, I should not be concerned over anticipating a slip of the tongue.

1/24/2006

DeLaRosa J_B1
Garland High School , Garland Tx.
I believe it is a very productive act to keep. I think we would feel safer with this law in effect. If we are more worried about our privacy rather than our safety, thae at any time the United States could be hit with terrorism once again and this is just one way to keep up with it.

1/23/2006

amanda
trinity high school, washington
The Patriot Act is essential for the betterment and survival of The American people. The freedoms we 'sacrifice' are necessary!

1/23/2006

Michael P.
Trinity High School, Washington PA
Obviously, as we can all see, this is essential to the safety of the United States. If people can board planes and kill innocent Americans, then one must give up some of their liberties to protect the safety of others. There are twisted people out there in the United States who would like to harm us, thus, this is crucial.

1/23/2006

Cara D.
Trinity HS, Washington PA
I think the Patriot Act is a good way to help secure our country. It has ups and downs, but it has kept the U.S. safer.

1/23/2006

Lauren D.
Trinity HS, Washington PA
The Patriot Act is an invasion of the privacy of U.S. citizens and is unconstitutional.

1/23/2006

Andrew A.
Trinity HS, Washington PA
I believe it is a very productive act to keep. It's designed for the protection of freedom. There is nothing wrong with that.

1/23/2006

Kaylyn
Trinity HS, Washington PA
I believe it is wrong and that there should be no Patriot Act.

1/23/2006

Brittany A.
Arts High School, Newark
I think the Patriot Act is beneficial to our safety in the United States. At any time the United States could be hit with terrorism once again and this is just one way to keep up with it.

1/23/2006

Johana F.
Arts high School (newark)
No, I strongly believe the Patriot Act should not be renewed. The cost of our civil liberites is too high. To renew it is another way to show terrorists they have won, that we are terrified to the point where we are willing to give up our rights-- the same rights many men fought and died for in America!

1/22/2006

StacieP_A2
Garland High, Garland Tx
I really don't think that renewing the Patriot Act would change anything. Terrorists will still find a way to attack whomever they want to. Just because the security levels are higher doesn't mean that nothing will happen. I believe we will still be attacked no matter if the security level is high or not. So i think that it shouldn't be renewed because it wouldn't change anything.

1/20/2006

group 1
Northeast high school Philadelphia
The act should not be removed because it is very necessary for the welfare of our country. I think we would feel safer with this law in effect. If we are more worried about our privacy rather than our safety, We would be in a lot of trouble.

1/20/2006

Group 2
Northeast HS Philadelphia
we disagree with the act. we feel that it threatens the privacy of our everyday citizens. It is a violation of our civil rights-- they are taking it too far.

1/17/2006

Nathan B
Newport High School, Newport, PA
I feel that the Patriot Act has done what it is was meant to do, and that was to protect our country against terrorism.

1/17/2006

Bennie W.
Arts High ( Newark,NJ)
I feel as though the patriot act should stay in effect because as soon as you let your guard down that's when the u.s. is going to have problems with terrisom. everything should just stay the way it is.

1/16/2006

Michael S.
Eastmoor Academy, Columbus Ohio
The Patriot Act was installed on grounds of protection and anti-terrorism, but it was also built on a foundation of fear. People fear what they do not understand, although they fear what they DO understand all the more. The U.S. government understands the terrorists, at least as far as motives and courses of action are concerned. They know that terrorists are exceptionally uncanny and devoid of moral bounds (at least by our standards). While I fully support measures that will hinder any future major attacks on our soil, I am wary of the power of fear creeping into our legislation. Tapping phone lines and making the accusatory name 'terrorist' synonymous to the Red Scare name 'communist' represent elements of tightening controls in an increasingly intolerable, federal mind. Would anyone agree that imprisoning the Japanese during WWII was necessary to ensure the safety of Americans? No more do I feel that compromising the rights of today’s U.S. citizens is necessary to defeat terrorism.

1/16/2006

Matthew T.
Lebanon High School, Lebanon, PA
I think that the Patriot Act should stay in effect at least until the war is over. If people really have nothing to hide then why should it matter if the government watches them? It helps to protect us and if you really have nothing to hide then it shouldn’t be a problem. These civil rights are important but they only convict the guilty.

1/13/2006

YeniG_B1
Garland High School, Garland TX
In my opinion, I think that the Patriot act should not be renewed. This act will take up some of our rights as Americans. Patriot act or no patriot act we still suffered a huge act of terrorism in 9/11! The US is the main target for terrorists, and even if there is a Patriot Act, they won't stop until they attack us again. So i think there is no need to renew the Patriot act.

1/12/2006

MarielN_B1
Garland High School, Garland Tx
Honestly, I can't say whether to renew the patriot act or not. Terrorists always seem to act against us and accomplish what they want. I don't think that just a single group of people can protect us, but if we all work together and acted as if we really cared for our country, then we would all make an effort to do all we can and put our brains together to figure what else could be done about terrorism. The important thing, though, is that someone who cares is trying really hard to protect and keep us from terrorism... and that's what counts.

1/12/2006

joser_A2
Garland High - Garland, TX
It is good to have security in this country against terrorism but i think that they should change some of the laws they have so people will be more comfortable.

1/12/2006

Heather B
Nimitz, Irving, TX
I understand that they are trying to protect us from terrorism, but i feel that the Patriot act should not be renewed. I believe it is totally unconstitutional and violates some of our rights! It doesn't help me sleep at night knowing the government can conduct a search and seizure without permission!

1/12/2006

Victoria L.
Stroudsburg JHS, PA
I don't think the Patriot Act should be renewed because it could result in certain liberties taken away from us. We shouldn't be spied on either, just because of a terrorist threat. The rights we currently have shouldn't be taken away from us because of a terrorist threat. If we renew the patriot act, it will certainly protect us from terrorism but our rights will probably be violated. By spying, the government is pretty much directly violating the ideals upon which the U.S. was founded.

1/12/2006

Matt K.
Stroudsburg Junior High, PA
I believe that the patriot act should be renewed to its fullest power. Unfortunately, in this country, if you overhear a conversation you are in violation of the US Constitution. The Patriot Act was meant to protect individuals from terrorism, not violate our personal rights. If citizen aren't committing vulgar acts of terrorism, why should they care? America needs to trust in our government, and how can we do that if we destroy one of the main acts of security today? It keeps us safe. Americans say that 9/11 has reunited our country and also changed it dramatically, but this couldn't be the truth. The Patriot Act needs to be renewed. Like with every Act, though, there has to be some minor changes. The word safe makes people feel protected, so we should keep it that way.

1/12/2006

Dylan D.
Stroudsburg Junior High, Stroudsburg
The Patriot Act should be renewed because it helps keep us everyday citizens safe from the terrorist threat to the United States. If it is not renewed The U.S. could be in real danger from terrorists. We need to keep a close eye on those suspected to be terrorists because they could be able to attack our beautiful country at any time.

1/12/2006

Andrew S.
Stroudsburg Jr. High School
I think that the Patriot Act needs to be kept because if we want a safer nation, we need to be able to monitor people who are suspected of terrorism. I think the Partiot Act SHOULD be renewed because it has kept us safe since it was created. If we were to repeal the Partiot Act, then it will be a sign to the terriosts that we are weakening in our fight against them. And that is something that we cannot have. WE NEED THE PATRIOT ACT TO KEEP US SAFE.

1/12/2006

Jessica
Stroudsburg Junior High, PA
I absolutely do not like the Patriot Act. The government says that they only look through suspected terrorists' things like their e-mails or cellphones. However, how can we be so sure? I believe our government often fails to tell us the whole story. They could be looking through your e-mail right now, why? Well, unless you're a suspected terrorist, there's really no reason. What happened to our privacy, or better yet, our rights against search and seizure? This Act is just violating our rights as Americans.

1/12/2006

Jay
Stroudsburg Junior High School, PA
I think the Patriot Act should be renewed because it could help the U.S. out a lot right now. Some possible terrorists could be caught with this act. This act makes America much safer and less vulnerable to terrorist attacks. There have been no complaints filed against the Patriot Act and some terrorist plots have been foiled because of the act. The Patriot Act is meant to protect us from terrorist attacks and if there are some civil liberties that are being violated, it's a small price to pay compared to saving U.S. citizens from terrorist attacks.

1/12/2006

Alexandra V.
Stroudsburg Junior High, PA
The Patriot Act is costing Americans a lot of money. Right now the government is looking for ways to pay for schools, heath care, and other important issues like that. I think that the money that is being spent on this act should be directed to those problems. We have enough security in place as is. It may allow the wrong people to view certain information that they maybe shouldn't see.

1/12/2006

matt b
Stroudsburg Junior High, PA
I think that the Patriot act should be renewed. I think this because the Patriot act was very good at protecting our nation. Even though a few rights were violated, it gave law enforcement the power essential to fight the terrorists. I do believe, however, that some of the issues concerning the Patriot act need to be revised and changed. On the whole I believe that the Patriot act should be renewed.

1/12/2006

briana v.
Stroudsburg Junior High, PA
I think that the Patriot Act is a good thing to renew. By having the act it allowes america to be safer and also terrorists will have a harder time of getting away with things such as making a bomb or something. People should not be worried about having their things searched through. Thats ridiculious! They should be actually concerned with our government's safety. If someone is highly suspected of being a terrorist and there is not enough proof but the CIA and everyone is 100% sure (even on instinct) that they are up to something, I would want that person in jail or locked up somewhere so I don't get bombed or anything. Also, they should have nothing to hide so I don't see why they care so much.

1/12/2006

leah
Stroudsburg Jr. High, PA
I think that the Patriot Act should be renewed. Since this law was signed there have not been any terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. However, there is always room for improvement. If this law is renewed, it is important that it is strictly followed. This act makes our country safer and makes it a lot harder for any terrorists to enter our country with any harmful weapons. I feel that the safety of our country is very important and with this law in effect, I feel a lot safer.

1/12/2006

abby t.
Stroudsburg Jr High School, PA
i don't see how we can label ourselves the land of the free when the things that make us free are being taken away from us and debated. and who can tell if these things are being used the right way? they could be doing anything they want with these powers and that's just a scary thought in general. these are the things that make us different from the non-democratic nations. the government has no right to go into our homes and private lives. I'm completely against it and if that makes me a crazy liberal than i'm fine with that.

1/12/2006

Corey T.
Stroudsburg Jr. High School, Stroudsburg PA
I believe that the Patriot Act Should stay in effect because it is better to be safe than sorry. I believe this because we are in a war on terror and if we take our guard down then we might be in trouble because we are a major country right now to be attacked.

1/12/2006

Laura S.
Stroudsburg Jr. High, Stroudsbur, PA
I am in favor of the Patriot Act, but I think that security's power needs to be limited. The only time that the police should be able to listen in on phone conversations, I think, is if they are tracking down a suspect. I don't use the phone that much, but when I do, I like to feel like I have some privacy, and that no one else should be listening. I also like to think that no one is reading my e-mails other than the person who sent it, or the person I sent it to. Other than that, I am in favor of renewing the Patriot Act.

1/12/2006

Robert
Trinity High School, PA
The Patriot Act is a necessity to our country. After 9/11 we the American people should be willing to allow our goverment to provide us protection. You may say that this would take away our civil liberties. But as of right now this has not been done. Those who object to this idea, allow me to ask you this, and seriously think about it: Do you really want to be in the next 9/11? By enabling the Patriot Act our country can provide us with more intelligence on terrorists. There is a country song that says 'Have you forgotten?' and I truly believe that our country has forgotten that tragic day.

1/12/2006

MichaelB_b1
Garland High School- Garland,Tx
I believe the Patriot act should be renewed, but maybe changed to allow more of the freedoms we rightfully have as Americans. I feel safer to some degree, but 'safety' has a different meaning for each individual.

1/12/2006

Bianca
Southwest High School, San Antonio, TX
I do not think the Patriot Act should be renewed. I haven't heard of any good coming from since it has been passed. I don't believe we should give up our civil liberties.

1/12/2006

VictorR_A2
Garland High School, Garland Texas
i think it will be safer with this act because i think that no one wants to get hurt in a terrorist attack. that's why i think that the patriot act should stay.

1/12/2006

GabrielleJ_B1
Garland High School, Garland,TX
Whether or not the patriot act is renewed I do not believe that it will make a difference because terrorists will do what they want even if there is security. We had security in 2001 but 9/11 still happened. Terrorists will not let anybody stop them from accomplishing their goals.

1/12/2006

Angelica S_A2
Garland High School , Garland, TX
I believe the Patriot Act should be renewed. I do feel safer with the law in effect because if I'm going out of town I want to feel secure that a bomb won't go off.

1/12/2006

ViridianaV_a2
Garland High School , Garland, TX
In a way, i guess i would feel safer with the patriot act renewed, but that would be at the cost of our liberty on more than one level. I'm sure if we as Americans took a stand to protect our civil rights instead of just sitting back and taking the easy way out, we could find a better solution. Besides, it is our rights we're talking about, don't we have a voice in the matter?

1/12/2006

NhiH_B1
Garland High School, Garland TX
When September 11, 2001 happened, it hurt America badly. So I think that the Patriot act should be renewed so that when we all Americans live in our homeland, we will not be threatened by terrorism.

1/12/2006

PortiaJ_a2
Garland High School,Garland Tx
I disagree with the Patriot Act because i wouldn't want anyone interfering with my rights.

1/12/2006

ABELV_A2
Garland High School, Garland TX
I Think it should be renewed-- it is good to feel safe but our liberties should not be restricted.

1/12/2006

RyanT_A2
Garland High School , Garland, TX
I disagree with the act because it invades our privacy in our own homes. I understand that our government is trying to protect us from terrorism. But terrorism is always going to be around, there's nothing you can really do about it just try to react to it when it comes. But invading other people's privacy to prevent more attacks isn't the right way.

1/11/2006

Ladarionj_a2
Garland High School,Garland
I believe that the patriot act should be renewed with a few changes limiting the power of security. Personally i feel that if the government was that concerned about saftey, the patriot act would have been in place years ago.

1/11/2006

Yuriy E.
Central High School, Philadelphia
I do not think that the Patriot Act should be renewed, due to the simple fact that it is an invasion of privacy for the American people, I do not feel safe knowing that certain liberties which I am entitled to are taken away because of another terrorist threat.

1/11/2006

Justin L.
Medina Valley, Castroville, TX
I truly believe that the patriot act should be renewed to its fullest power. Unfortunately, in this country if you overhear a conversation you are in violation of the US Constitution. The Patriot Act was meant to protect individuals from terrorism, not violate our personal rights. If the average citizen isn't committing vulgar acts of terrorism, why should he/she care? America needs to trust in our government, and how can we do that if we destroy one of the main acts of security today? It keeps us safe at home and on the go. Americans claim that 9/11 has reunited our country, but this couldn't be farther from the truth.

1/11/2006

AmandaR-b1
Garland High School , Garland, TX
I think the Patriot Act shouldn't be renewed due to the reason that we have rights that shouldn't ever be taken away from us. If it comes in effect again we will lose liberties that we should have.

1/11/2006

UzielR_A2
Garland High School, Garland, Tx
Sadly not even the Patriot Act can defend America against terrorism. What’s the point? We have shown terrorists that they have already won. Not only did terrorism hurt America September 11 2001, but it’s legacy hides behind the Patriot Act. This Act may seem to protect our nation, yet it threatens every American’s fundamental freedoms. It’s time to move on.

1/11/2006

Vos W_A2
Garland High, Garland TX
I believe that the Patriot Act should be renewed but the congress should lessen the power of security. I would feel the same safety that I did before because what is the defintion of safe and are we really ever safe?

1/11/2006

KristinaB_B1
Garland HS, Garland Texas
Despite the suffocation that some Americans feel from the Patriot Act we need the extra protection from our government. Our safety is too great to compromise just because people want more independence. What is the point of a government if we don't allow it to do its job? I believe that if the US's elected president feels so strongly about keeping this act in effect that our nation should support him.

1/11/2006

WilliamW_A2
Garland HS, Garland Texas
Frankly, my forefathers didn't die for our freedoms to have them taken away by anyone, president or terrorist. Bush has every right to monitor those suspected of terrorism, but why is it so impossible for him to bear the burden of proof and get a warrant from a judge? Really? And why doesn't the Patriot Act cover guns? Seriously, I don't want guns in the hands of half the people I know, let alone suspected terrorists. But would those in favor of the Patriot Act be so keen to give away their right to bear arms? Let's try it and see.

1/10/2006

Samantha M
Lebanon High School, Lebanon, PA
I feel that that the Patriot Act is a good idea. I feel safer and know that I can go out with friends without having to worry. Even though the probability of a terrorist attack may be low, it can still happen. I do agree that it can be invading personal lives, but I would rather be safe than dead. I still think that it is a good idea to renew the Patriot Act.

1/10/2006

Cortney K.
LHS Lebanon PA
I don't think the Patriot Act should be renewed. The government should spend it's money on helping people in need.

1/10/2006

EsmeraldaM_B1
Garland High School , Garland Texas
I am against the Patriot Act because the citizens have to have some type of power and they should be able to have their own rights.

1/10/2006

Tanner M.
Nimitz HS, Irving TX
When was the last terrorist attack in the states? It seems to me that the major threat is mostly gone. We need to be on the alert but we don't need to restrict freedoms until we have proof that these terrorists that are lurking among us are actually there and aren't figments of an overactive imagination.

1/10/2006

Varghese J.
Nimitz, Irving, TX
I think that the Patriot Act should be renewed. Our nation is much more vulnerable to attacks than we think. 9/11 showed us this, and the government needs all the help they can get to protect our citizens.

1/10/2006

Stefan A.
Nimitz High School, Irving, TX
In my opinion i think that the act should not be renewed because the US is not in any real danger. The US has not had to deal with terrorist attacks for a while and there isn't any that are a threat right now.

1/10/2006

Sara
Nimitz, Irving, TX
I think the Patriot Act is important to the nation's protection. It does infringe on some of the rights American's believe are basic necessities, but we have to make compromises to ensure our everlasting safety. What we should be dealing with is not if we should have the Patriot Act, but how we should balance out all the questionable provisions.

1/10/2006

Rachel
Parkland HS, Allentown PA
The patriot act, while a noble gesture, is a blatant violation of civil liberties and the rights guaranteed to Americans by the Constitution. Under no circumstance should the government be permitted to violate civil liberties in the time of war in order to 'protect national security.' By inhibiting these freedoms guaranteed to our people, the government is directly violating the ideals upon which our nation was founded.

1/10/2006

Rob D.
Nimitz Irving
I think it is a good thing to have something like the patriot act in order to protect our citizens. But it gets to a point were our civil liberties are being violated. The whole thing about president bush and tapping people's phones without court orders is a violation of the bill of rights. That just proves that it has gone a little too far.

1/10/2006

Kyle R.
Nimitz HS, Irving, TX
I believe that the Patriot Act should not be renewed in its current state. Much like the conclusion drawn by Congress, I believe that there must be reform in the legislation before it can be enacted for another lengthy duration. While the goal of airtight national security has not diminished since 9/11, I believe that the circumstances under which the program was implemented have changed. We have made great strides towards eliminating the terrorism that plagues the Middle East, terrorism that hopes to harm us both abroad and at home. But I also believe that, with this progress, the restrictions placed on our citizens and the invasions allowed into our privacy should be reconsidered. If terrorism is indeed being combated and eliminated as the administration proclaims, I believe it is only a reasonable conclusion that they revisit the depths to which a citizen’s privacy can be affected in the name of a declining threat.

1/10/2006

Aimee
Nimitz High School, Irving, TX
The Patriot Act should be renewed because in a way it makes many citizens feel much safer in their everyday lives. It is true that some provisions of the Act could be removed because they flirt too much with people's civil liberties, but the Patriot Act as a whole should not be done away with.

1/10/2006

Gloria
Nimitz, Irving, TX
Someone once asked me if i agree with the Patriot Act. When I expressed that I do not, he asked 'Do you want to die?' I was hard pressed to see where the connection lies. Like childhood bragging, do you think that the national government would be proud to express terrorists stopped out by the use of the Patriot Act? It just seems like that to me, use the Patriot Act, tell everyone about the victories, gain more public approval. 'What do you have to hide?' was another question I was asked and thought about this. I have nothing serious to hide, but I wouldn't like my house being searched without being shown a warrant first. I wouldn't like for the government to know what Sally said about Mark the other day. Just because I don't have anything to hide doesn't mean I feel it's the government's right to know the things I don't have to hide. Personally, I haven't felt any safer since the Patriot Act went into effect, neither have I felt less safe. It just seems to be a piece of legislation that makes no difference security-wise but seems to be taking much needed funds. Because we need millions of more dollars in the Defense program, the money for education is decreasing, and student loan interest rates are going up. If we keep ignoring education for our 'safety' we're going to de-evolve back into neanderthals with a bunch of weapons we don't even know how to use. Education is the future. Look at it.

1/10/2006

Mychal
Nimitz High School, Irving, TX
I do not agree with the provisions of the Patriot Act. The underlying idea behind it denies citizens of the U.S. the freedom which thousands of men and women have died for. If we have to give up the freedoms which set us apart from other nations, then why don't we all move to another country, a mostly peaceful country where we would have less freedoms than we do here, but more than the Patriot Act guarantees?

1/10/2006

Karrah B
Nimitz HS, Irving Tx
I agree. I think the Patriot Act shouldn't be renewed because the constitution always says that no one man is above the law. And I feel as if the president is publicly stating that he had more right to ruin someone's privacy than another American citizen by overriding the law for an insufficient reason. I feel that if it were removed, we would be making a statement that our government is literally as egalitarian as we say it is and maybe we would all feel a bit safer.

1/10/2006

Jesse S
Nimitz, Irving
The patriot act shouldn't be renewed because of its controversial provisions. The implementation of the patriot act was a good idea, but I think it just goes a little bit too far. The government can't have this type of access to our private lives. Sooner or later, this could start up trouble within the government itself and with its citizens.

1/10/2006

pChen
Parkland High School, Allentown, PA
While our country's attempt to protect its people from terrorism has good motives, the Patriot Act violates so many of the basic rights and liberties stated in the Constitution. If the Patriot Act goes against the basic backbone of America--freedom--it therefore should not be renewed.

1/10/2006

Nishita
Parkland High School, Allentown, PA
Terrorism has existed for many years, so responding to it shouldn't require naive reactions. Curtailing certain civil liberties may seem necessary, but I believe that terrorism can be fought and should be fought without having to give them up. Our panic after 9/11 has raised our sense of danger during these times. But while the threat of that danger seems to be receding with time, our liberties are a part of our lives that will never recede. we should get accustomed to fighting any form of threat or fear with all the opportunities available to us, including our civil liberties. If we react to terrorism by giving up certain civil liberties, I don't think we are winning as much as we would like, when there is also the possibility that we can fight without giving up as much as we have to. I believe there are other solutions than giving up liberties and that the provisions of the Patriot Act should not be renewed.

1/10/2006

cole b
Elizabethtown High School, Elizabethtown PA
I do not think the government has the right to tap into people's phone lines or internet. One of the great things about being an american is having personal freedom. Privacy is one thing that the government should not be allowed to intrude upon.

1/10/2006

Kathy R.
Elizabethtown High, Elizabethtown, PA
Yes, I do feel safer with the Patriot Act. A terrorist attack could happen at any time and I feel better knowing this law is alive.

1/10/2006

Ren H.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown, PA
The Patriot Act is merely a tool to invade our privacy and take advantage of the fears of Americans. This is a major atrocity. The fear of terrorists is unfounded. I believe we should be more afraid of our own government.

1/10/2006

Wendy H.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown
If the Patriot Act will continue to keep America safe, then it sounds like a good idea. There shouldn't be a price on safety and freedom.

1/10/2006

aaron
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown
I believe that the Patriot Act should renewed, because of the security and saftey it provides. We cannot just have caution when an event like September 11 occurs. We need the protection and to take the measures even when we don't think something will happen. This will prevent another horrible terrist attack. This also provides saftey among the USA and helps to take care of illegal actions.

1/10/2006

Marc N.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown, PA
I think that we're headed down a slippery slope. It amazes me what people will put up with because they have had fear injected into their minds by the government. Our government cannot just go signing away our civil liberties. The American people need to realize that there are other ways to gain security other than increased spying and force, which are making our nation look more and more like a police state.

1/10/2006

Colby H
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I feel as if the Patriot Act cuts into a citizen's privacy. Citizens need to have their own rights and have some degree of privacy. The main danger is gone, so let's not renew the Patriot Act.

1/10/2006

Alex H.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
The Patriot Act removes fundamental American rights. If the government can pick and choose when to sidestep due process, therefore, violating our Constitution, Americans are no longer safe at home. What right will we give up next?

1/10/2006

amber
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I think that the patriot act is a really good thing. I will feel a lot safer with it. I can go out with my friends and not worry about being attacked. so i think it would be a great thing to renew the act.

1/10/2006

sean
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I feel that this makes us safer but i also do not like the idea of people listening in on our conversations. i like having the right to privacy but i also want to be safe in our country as well.

1/10/2006

Ashley
Elizabthown Area High School, Elizabethtown
As long as the Patriot Act continues to keep our country safe and protect us from future terrorist attacks I think that it should be renewed. Although it may cause an inconvenience and some people may say it is an intrusion on our privacy and rights, I think that we should do whatever we need to in order to maintain a safe environment to live in.

1/10/2006

amber
elizabethtown area high school
I do want safety from terrorism but i'm not so comfortable with the government listening in on my phone conversations or look at my emails. My calls are my personal conversations. I want safety, i really just don't like the fact of them hearing my conversations. Sometimes they are personal and no one else should hear it. Except i want safety so i guess i have to give in and i will start talking in person more. I think we should renew Patriot Act.

1/10/2006

Nikki
Elizabethtown Area HS, Elizabethtown
I think the Patriot Act is a good idea as long as there are limitations to it. It is a great way to keep American safer. However I believe tapping into cellphones isn't a necessary action towards promoting safety.

1/10/2006

Rachael W.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I don't think the patriot act should be renewed. our freedom is so important to us. The government could spend money on other people. We should be able to have our own rights and we should have have some type of power and say.

1/10/2006

Amanda
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown
No, I don't think the Patriot Act should be renewed. It's a complete infringement on privacy rights. It's not a legitimate saftey precaution in a country that is based upon the rights and liberties of its citizens.

1/10/2006

ashley s
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
i think that we should be able to have more privacy than this will allow. what we do in our homes is none of their business. they cannot just assume that everyone in America is talking about war and even if they are, they can't just listen to everything that we say. it is ridiculous that we can't even trust our government. I believe this is a form of communism and i think that it could foreshadow a downfall of our beloved government.

1/10/2006

CJewell
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
Simply, I think that if we want to keep this country safe and free of terrorism we need to take all the precautionary measures that the Patriot Act allows.

1/10/2006

Jackie H.
Elizabethtown
I think that it is a good idea to renew the Patriot Act. It is very nice to know that you can feel safe when you are at home or out with others.

1/10/2006

Johanna R.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I believe that the terms taken to protect this country have been fair and necessary. It hasn't hurt anyone only insured more safety for our country. Some may argue that Sept. 11 is long over, but if we just lay back and forget about terrorists we just make ourselves vulnerable.

1/10/2006

EderT_b1
Garland High School, Garland, Texas
I think that the act should be renewed as long as it doesn't interfere that much with our liberties because we have to be able to think that this country is safe.

1/10/2006

MontrealW_A2
Garland High, Garland TX
If the Patriot Act is supposed to protect us and make us fell so safe, why do we not feel this way? Basically, it is because we, as a people, feel that our individual rights are being infringed upon more and more as the years go by; and that our freedom is limited more now than ever. Yes, it is understood that there was a terrorist attack. Yes, we were scared and we felt the need to protect our nation by all means possible. However, invading our privacy will cause-- no,is causing-- ua citizens to become more private and more secretive in our affairs. So the President must ask himself if his method of protecting is really worth making us all go astray.

1/9/2006

Tuan H
LHS Lebanon, PA
Personally, I think that the patriot act shouldn't be renewed. Our country really doesn't need more security because the probability of a terrorist attack is really low. Why should we waste our money on something that doesn't have a major affect on the nation? The money can be used to pay off our national debt instead.

1/9/2006

Ashley
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I am against the patriot act because I feel that it is an invasion of everyone's privacy. This gives the government too much power and it denies the freedoms of the citizens that generations before have fought so hard to give us.

1/9/2006

Mike
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I do not agree with the patriot act because it gives the police more power as long as they are looking for a 'suspected terrorist.' In my opinion, the patriot act was a heat of the moment bill and once everyone calms down about terrorists we will see that the patriot act is a violation of american civil liberties.

1/9/2006

Nick S.
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
This is a very difficult situation. The Patriot Act, as shown through the facts, is obviously necessary in order to keep the United States free of terrorism. However, the actons that are taken through this law need to be closely monitored in order to keep the government from gaining too much control over the freedoms of its citizens.

1/9/2006

Angela F
Elizabethtown HS, PA
I believe that the Patriot Act is too powerful and steps too far into the lives of citizens. Although not a frequent occurrence, people have been detained purely because of their national background. I understand that Bush wants to prevent another attack, but he should not be doing it by supressing US citizens. I do not see how the Patriot Act could have prepared the US for the September 11 attacks.

1/9/2006

Jessica B
Elizabethtown High School, Elizabethtown PA
The patriot act needs to be revisited and changed. There are some parts of the act that I agree with and other parts that I disagree with. Our security is important for the overall safety of our citizens. However, I also think it is an excuse for to use for jusifying improper actions by the government. I don't always feel safer with the Patriot Act, however I will say it has made it harder for something to happen.

1/9/2006

mike z
elizabethtown HS, PA
I am personally against the patriot act, though i understand that is is probably for the best. It just violates our personal privacy too much. It takes away some of the rights guarenteed by the Bill of Rights. The patriot act does not make me feel any safer.

1/9/2006

Nicole
Elizabethtown HS, PA
Which is the greater good: Our safety, or our privacy? I believe safety is the outlying need to sustain order in the US. Some may see the Patriot Act as an infringement of our constitutional right to privacy, but it is our current method of protection. Until our government can create a more efficient program for this purpose, I think it is wise to continue and renew the Patriot Act.

1/9/2006

Samantha
Elizabethtown Area High School, Elizabethtown PA
I feel that the Patriot Act is something we need in America and something that is a sense of security to so many. The Patriot Act, while it maybe unconstitutional with the wire-taps and the unwarranted searches, could also prevent a future attack on the United States. We need to step back and look at the big picture. With the government having ways at their fingertips to find things out about the public may be scary, it is being used in a way that could prevent terrorism from happening. I feel that we need to keep the Patriot Act intact until it is turned against the general public or when it is used for things other than to prevent terrorist attacks.

1/9/2006

Caitlin P.
Lebanon High School, Lebanon,PA.
I feel the Patriot Act is a great idea. It should definitly be renewed without question. With having this act in place I feel safer going out to the movies with friends and just going where I need to go because I know I will be safe.

1/9/2006

Connor C.
Lebanon High School, Lebanon, PA
I don’t think that we really need the Patriot Act because I’m not really afraid of another terrorist attack. But I don’t really think that this act infringes on Civil Liberties as much as people think. I think that if you’re not doing anything wrong, then you don’t need to worry about the government tapping your phone. So, I think that people need to just calm down with this whole Patriot Act panic.

1/9/2006

Michelle S.
Lebanon High School, Lebanon, PA
Personally, I believe the Patriot Act is necessary to protect our country from a terrorist attack. I think that we must sacrifice some of the luxuries we’ve enjoyed in order to remain safe. Many people accuse American officials of having previous knowledge of the 9/11 attacks and not responding. Perhaps, if they had tapped reliable information from its source instead of hearing sketchy rumors, they would have had enough information to act. Also, why should people be nervous about having their phone lines tapped unless they have something to hide? Besides, do you really think officials are going to waste their time listening in on your conversation with your great aunt Ethel in Nebraska? No! They are going to be listening for communications between terrorist groups and terrorist suspects.

1/9/2006

paul
Nimitz, Irving, TX
I believe that the Patriot Act needs to be renewed. The people who are complaining about the loss of civil freedoms are the same people that, after the attacks, were accusing the U.S. of being unprepared. No matter what, someone is going to disagree, but I'd much rather know that I am safe in my own country than worry about 'losing' my civil liberties.

1/9/2006

BrysanyC_B1
Garland High School Garland,TX
I disagree with the Patriot Act because it gives the government too much power. But I also agree because we need more security.

1/9/2006

GiselaR_B1
Garland High School Garland, Tx
I agree with the Patriot Act because it is necessary for people to be and feel safer.

1/9/2006

Judy C_B2
Garland High School (Garland, Texas)
I don't think that the act should be renewed because we're just going to be paying money in vain for this so called 'safety'. 'safety' really isn't there. i'm not talking only about the terrorists but there's crime everywhere we go all around us. School, work, streets, stores, absolutely everywhere. so that's why i don't think the act should be renewed.

1/9/2006

KirstenK_A2
Garland High School, Garland, Texas
If we (the American people) are stripped of our freedoms, then what are we fighting to protect? I believe that the Patriot Act should not be renewed.

1/9/2006

Amanda C.
Medina Valley High School Castroville TX
The Patriot Act is costing Americans a lot of money. Right now the government is looking for ways to pay for schools, heath care, and other important issues like that. I think that the money that is being spent on this act should be directed to those problems. We have enough security in place as is.

1/8/2006

BubbaS_b2
Garland High, Garland TX
I agree with the Patriot Act because it helps keep each American citizen safe. Although some say the cost is too high, I believe no matter how much is spent, our safety and freedom is more important.

1/6/2006

shandrea_b1
Garland High School Garland, TX
I totally agree with the Patriot Act. I'm glad that the government officials see a need for more security. I'm glad that the Patriot Act was signed shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks. If we would have gotten it signed into law a couple of years earlier, I think that the United States would have been more prepared for the terroist attacks. I'm glad that someone is concerned about whether or not we Americans are safe at home and while we're out somewhere. Yes I think that the Patriot Act should be renewed for my safety and for everyone else's safety.

1/6/2006

FransisB_b1
Garland High School Garland, TX
I disagree with the Patriot Act. I disagree with it because it may be a way for other people to look up information they shouldn't know about.

1/6/2006

Sherritha W.
Garland High School, Garland,Tx
I strongly agree that the Patroit Act needs to be renewed. We really do need more security because some Americans are scared for their lives ever since they found out about 9-11.

1/6/2006

Christopher C.
Medina Valley, Castroville, TX
I do not believe that the Patriot Act should be renewed. America is the symbol of personal freedoms in this world, and they cannot be taken away in the face of terrorism. For Americans to feel safer, government agencies such as the CIA and FBI need to follow up on leads that they have and cooperate; if they had done that pre-September 11, 9-11 might never have happened.

1/6/2006

Andrea R.
Lebanon High, Lebanon PA
i agree with the patriot act. i think the patriot act should be renewed so everybody knows what is going on.

1/6/2006

Sarah G.
Lebanon High, Lebanon, PA
I agree that the Patriot Act is a good thing. Also I think that it should be renewed. Also I think we are safer when the law is in effect. No, I don't think anything should be removed.

1/5/2006

Aaron C.
Nimitz, Irving, TX
The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, affording wiretaps and searches without a proper warrant. Under no circumstance, including wartime, should the government have the right to deny freedom in the interest of security.

1/5/2006

Cassandra B
Central High School Philadelphia, PA
Anything that destroys the constitution cannot be safer for our country. To ignore the constitution would be letting the terrorists win. Our constitution is what separates the United States from the terrorists we are fighting against.

1/5/2006

steven v.
East High School Columbus, OH
I'm an immigrant from Africa and i think that too many things are getting into the Government's hands. they can monitor Americans' lives. I think that the patroit act challenges our personal safety. it should be removed before it affects the people of the United States.

1/5/2006

Kay-KayR_A2
Garland High School, Garland,TX
I am against the patriot act, and I don't see how it will make me feel any safer knowing that a bunch of strangers can look up my information. What is that securing?

1/5/2006

Phallyn T_B1
Garland High School, Garland, TX
The Patriot Act is a much needed law in this country due to the amount of attempted terrorist attacks. However this act should not be so strict that American citizens cannot enjoy regular everyday activities.

1/4/2006

Bill R
Springfield High School, Springfield, NJ
I personally am against the Patriot act. It violates some rights promised by the Bill of Rights.

1/4/2006

NatalieP_A2
Garland High School Garland, TX
The Patriot Act is too much like big brother. Since this has gone into effect people have given up freedom for a false sense of security. If this act should be reinstated there should be more limitations on provisions that strip freedoms from civilians.

1/3/2006

Kyle P.
Medina Valley High School Castroville TX
The Patriot Act is vital to America's safety. As long as needed, it will help ensure the safety of the nation. However, it is a violaton of privacy, so it should only be extended for a short period of time until the war on terrorism slows down or comes to a stop.

1/3/2006

Gerald D.
Medina Valley High School, C astroville, TX
I think that the Patriot act should be removed because it is invading the privacy of the American Public. Too many things are getting put into government's hands these days-- things that they don't really need to know for any apparent reason. I think that before we know it, some politician short on funds for a campaign is going to be selling information and all kinds of problems are going to arise from that.

1/3/2006

Willie
Medina Valley High School Castroville TX
While I do believe that the ideas present in the Patriot Act were done with the best of intentions, I don't believe that it should be renewed because it encroaches too much on our pesonal privacy. I think that if the government gets to the point where they can monitor our lives, they will, eventually, try to control our lives. And this does not make me feel safer at all.

1/3/2006

David
Medina Valley High School Castroville TX
I believe the Patriot Act is unjust and should be removed because it is no longer an issue about the safety of our country, it is violating the privacy of the citizens. With the act still in effect, the privacy of our everyday lives is being thrown away by allowing the government to look up any information on someone without sufficient evidence. It has become more of an issue with privacy than with security.

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