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house Bill H.R. 248

Should No Fly & Watch Lists Not Matter Unless a Person Has Been Convicted of Terrorism?

Argument in favor

The federal government has a very poor track record of ensuring that only genuine threats end up on no fly lists or terror watch lists. Being on a watch list alone shouldn’t prevent a person from boarding a plane or cruise ship unless they've been convicted of terrorism.

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08/11/2017
That's the definition of due process. You cannot restrict a person's rights unless you have PROVEN, beyond a reasonable doubt, that they are guilty of a crime. Suspicion is irrelevant. There's no due process for ending up on one of these lists. There's no trial and no appeals process. You can get thrown onto one of these lists and never come off. That's not Constitutional and it's not ethical. The guilty have committed crimes. The under-suspicion have not (if they have, then prove it). Until someone is convicted in a court of law they are assumed innocent. That is the standard of justice in this country and for good reason. Stop restricting rights because of suspicion. Justice requires a higher standard than your hunch.
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Matthew's Opinion
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08/11/2017
You may be a person of interest, but the state/government, at any level, nation, regional, local, does not have the right or and should not have the power to interfere with your ability to exercise natural rights (aka travel) unless you have been convicted of a crime and a proven danger society. Otherwise we would be no better than soviets or nazis in creating “enemy lists”. Such a power could be, and history has shown, is, abused for those in power able to manipulate such lists.
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Kodiwodi's Opinion
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08/11/2017
I have always thought these list were ridiculous and caused undue harm to our own citizens. Babies being unable to fly as their name was too similar or the same as someone on the list. People being unable to return home because suddenly their name is on a list. People who have never done a thing wrong in their lives but express a view unable to travel because now they've been put on a watch list. There is no due process for these American citizens. Most are never accused of a crime but because of a list they cannot enjoy the privileges other Americans enjoy. It reminds me of McCarthy's lists of commies.
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Argument opposed

What good is a no fly list if people on it are still able to fly? The terror watch list and no fly lists are imperfect and people have been mistakenly included, but the federal government should be able to use them to prevent people from boarding a plane or cruise ship.

Loraki's Opinion
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08/11/2017
I agree with Countable member Phillip C., who said: "There are many individuals who have not committed the crime "yet" that should perhaps on the basis of intelligence be prevented. However if you are a citizen and placed on a list then you should be informed in writing of that decision and also be given at the same time the opportunity to redress the matter if it is wrong." Waiting until someone has been convicted of terrorism doesn't make sense! If you've been convicted, you should be in prison! The system, granted, is flawed, and something needs to be done to keep innocent people off the lists, but I don't have the answers for fixing it. If I come up with a good solution, maybe I'll run for President after Trump's done! 😀 In the meantime, let's not wait for the horse to get out of barn before we shut the barn door! If there is a good case for probable cause, I don't want the person on my flight!
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Nancy's Opinion
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08/11/2017
There are potential terrorists who are known to be planning attacks. They should be on the "do not fly" list. We should not wait for them to murder people first.
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Linda's Opinion
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08/11/2017
Conviction should not be a factor. Anyone on the federal no fly list, watch list, or similar list should not be able to fly. However, anyone on such a list should be notified and given the right to appeal for removal from the list. This is a situation between security and constitutional rights. Without sufficient knowledge, no individual should be put on a list. Sufficient justification must be given when notifying the person.
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    That's the definition of due process. You cannot restrict a person's rights unless you have PROVEN, beyond a reasonable doubt, that they are guilty of a crime. Suspicion is irrelevant. There's no due process for ending up on one of these lists. There's no trial and no appeals process. You can get thrown onto one of these lists and never come off. That's not Constitutional and it's not ethical. The guilty have committed crimes. The under-suspicion have not (if they have, then prove it). Until someone is convicted in a court of law they are assumed innocent. That is the standard of justice in this country and for good reason. Stop restricting rights because of suspicion. Justice requires a higher standard than your hunch.
    Like (91)
    Follow
    Share
    I agree with Countable member Phillip C., who said: "There are many individuals who have not committed the crime "yet" that should perhaps on the basis of intelligence be prevented. However if you are a citizen and placed on a list then you should be informed in writing of that decision and also be given at the same time the opportunity to redress the matter if it is wrong." Waiting until someone has been convicted of terrorism doesn't make sense! If you've been convicted, you should be in prison! The system, granted, is flawed, and something needs to be done to keep innocent people off the lists, but I don't have the answers for fixing it. If I come up with a good solution, maybe I'll run for President after Trump's done! 😀 In the meantime, let's not wait for the horse to get out of barn before we shut the barn door! If there is a good case for probable cause, I don't want the person on my flight!
    Like (70)
    Follow
    Share
    You may be a person of interest, but the state/government, at any level, nation, regional, local, does not have the right or and should not have the power to interfere with your ability to exercise natural rights (aka travel) unless you have been convicted of a crime and a proven danger society. Otherwise we would be no better than soviets or nazis in creating “enemy lists”. Such a power could be, and history has shown, is, abused for those in power able to manipulate such lists.
    Like (42)
    Follow
    Share
    I have always thought these list were ridiculous and caused undue harm to our own citizens. Babies being unable to fly as their name was too similar or the same as someone on the list. People being unable to return home because suddenly their name is on a list. People who have never done a thing wrong in their lives but express a view unable to travel because now they've been put on a watch list. There is no due process for these American citizens. Most are never accused of a crime but because of a list they cannot enjoy the privileges other Americans enjoy. It reminds me of McCarthy's lists of commies.
    Like (31)
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    I believe there should be due process for a no fly list. Every citizen deserves their right to trial and to stand up for themselves. I know if I was put on a no fly list, I would want my chance to explain my innocence or why I shouldn't be on the no fly list.
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    There are potential terrorists who are known to be planning attacks. They should be on the "do not fly" list. We should not wait for them to murder people first.
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    Can we start with Airforce One? No fly to Russia.
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    This sounds counterproductive . If some one was convicted of terrorism .....wouldn't they be in jail for a long time and not be flying anyway. How many laws do we have and people are still committing crimes. One more rule .....doesn't matter.....
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    Conviction should not be a factor. Anyone on the federal no fly list, watch list, or similar list should not be able to fly. However, anyone on such a list should be notified and given the right to appeal for removal from the list. This is a situation between security and constitutional rights. Without sufficient knowledge, no individual should be put on a list. Sufficient justification must be given when notifying the person.
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    Can't just ban people without due process.
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    Your right to travel should not be infringed if you have not been convicted of a crime. How about better screening before boarding to catch the crazies.
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    There are people on the no fly list for no reason other than their name is the same as someone suspected of terrorism and there is no way to have a name removed. This list is a joke and should be disregarded.
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    If it's legitimate there should be a constitutional way to go about it. If we start compromising our civil liberties guaranteed in our Constitution then the terrorists have already won. If you have to eliminate freedom to eliminate danger, is it worth the cost? No! "Give me liberty or give me death." Protect due process and all of our liberties that make us free.
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    Unless a person is convicted they should be allowed to travel. This is a Democracy. There needs to be vigilant screening to stop those that want to harm others. I don't get it, they want to allow people with mental health issues to be able to get guns yet they want to stop innocents from getting on a plane???!!!
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    Those who complain about government overreach should consider the extreme lack of transparency and due process regarding the no-fly list and other restrictive lists like it. The government should not be in a position to decide arbitrarily that someone *may* pose a threat someday and thus be able to restrict their movements as a result. The government should come up with a better way of finding potential terrorists and keeping track of their movements in a way that does not infringe on their constitutional rights. We travel down a slippery slope when we start infringing on people's basic rights because the government decides they don't need to protect those rights.
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    I can honestly see both sides of this issue. There are legitimate security risks out there and I realize these lists were originally created as a means to help keep people safe. That said, we are constitutionally guaranteed the right to due process and the current system is a violation of due process. Ultimately, the rights of individuals and the legal authority of the constitution must be protected. A government intent on serving the people must be one willing to work within the laws established to protect the people. Life is scary and full of potential harm and I recognize terrorism is a real threat in today's world. However, in the final analysis I see the potential loss of individual rights and civil liberties as a much greater probability for how our nation will eventually crumble. Never has this been more true than it is today when we have a presidential pretender in the Oval Office who clearly holds totalitarian leanings in his mind and heart (?) where his understanding and respect for our democracy should be. He has already encouraged violence against protesters at his rallies and suggested police use abusive tactics when dealing with those they arrest. He has suggested Muslims be required to carry special religious identification cards. Just today he failed to call out or take a side against the white supremacist in Charlottesville, indicating everyone's hate and wrong doing was equivalent. It takes little imagination to see 45 trying to use something like the no fly list as a political tool against those who disagree with him or that he has decided to punish. This is precisely why a bill such as this which reenforces the Constitution and the right of individuals to due process is needed.
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    I see the point of protecting civil liberties but this is crazy.
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    Stop convicting people of crimes that don't exist. If you suspect them, investigate, otherwise we have a quaint, and often ignored, saying: innocent until proven guilty. This is not Minority Report.
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    The Federal Government does not have a very good record in collecting and interpreting information. Those conclusions do not provide sufficient weight to justify not letting people on a plane.
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    Innocent until proven guilty.
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