ACLU Set To Sue AT&T Over Phone Records
By Alicia Dorr in News on May 23, 2006 11:30AM
We’re sure by now that everyone has heard at least something about the whole National Secuity Agency/AT&T, phone records debacle (this is where you look it up if you haven't). Well, it’s about to hit a lot closer to home. Meaning that if the possibility of a near-omniscient (as far as records go) entity like AT&T handing over regular, domestic phone records to the NSA bothers you at all, the American Civil Liberties Union is looking to argue a class action lawsuit against AT&T on behalf of Illinois customers.
It doesn’t stop there. Prominent people in the Chicago community have signed on as plaintiffs; namely exceptionally seasoned journalist, author and all sorts of other rockin' of the normer, Studs Terkel, who charged the government with going “too far” with its data-mining effort.
The whole NSA/phone records thing has spawned a lot of debate, considering two things: Other companies accused of “regularly sharing records” (Verizon, Bell South) say that the facts sited in the USA Today story that broke the information about the NSA database are simply not true. Also, the back and forth data-mining between the government and communication companies like these could have always been just par for the course, and we might just be finding out about it now.
Whether the NSA’s spying on regular American citizens is just a regular practice or not, the ACLU is contending that it is ridiculous. The lawsuit is aiming for a court order to block further sharing of records. We think that looking at private records of regular Americans might just be the one thing that liberals and conservatives can all agree on; As in, whether you agree with lots of government involvement or very little, the Bill of Rights is always a pretty neat document for us to read at camp fires together while we kiss and make up.