They say that you have to fight fire with fire. Many have tried and failed to defeat the Patriot Act, which authorizes warrantless surveillance and kangaroo FISA courts. Rand Paul once filibustered it for 10 hours! But it keeps getting re-authorized instead of retired like it deserves.

If you aren’t familiar, the ACLU has a guide to the USA Patriot Act that explains everything quickly.

According to them,

“Hastily passed 45 days after 9/11 in the name of national security, the Patriot Act was the first of many changes to surveillance laws that made it easier for the government to spy on ordinary Americans by expanding the authority to monitor phone and email communications, collect bank and credit reporting records, and track the activity of innocent Americans on the Internet. While most Americans think it was created to catch terrorists, the Patriot Act actually turns regular citizens into suspects.”

The problem from the beginning is that one does not simply oppose something named the PATRIOT Act, or you could personally wind up like the Dixie Chicks. The name is loaded with nationalistic jingoism, if you oppose it are you not a Patriot? Do you not support the Troops?

Instead of raving in the proverbial town square like a madman about abolishment, we must repeal and replace. We need only to pass a bill named something proudfull like “The American Values Act”. If you oppose it, do you oppose American Values?? The values in question are privacy and individual rights instead of omnipotent authority. This is not to be confused with this bill from 2019.

The American Values Act will indeed replace most or all of the Patriot Act with nothing, and place strict limits of probable cause on FISA Courts. Much of it’s language will be lifted directly from the 4th Amendment, which the Patriot Act is in direct violation of.

So there you have it, repeal and replace the infernal bill with short and to the point one which reinstates the 4th Amendment of the US Constitution- and basic individual, human rights.