PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Journalist Glenn Greenwald criticized Democratic politicians that are calling for increased restrictions on gun ownership. He accused them of using Bush-era laws and tactics to deny citizens their Constitutional right of due process.
Greenwald, who co-founded The Intercept, told Rich Zeoli on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT that the push to prevent gun sales to individuals on the 'no-fly' emanates from dubious origins and will only further limit the freedoms of Americans.
"These no-fly lists and terror watch lists were actually created by George Bush, Dick Cheney and the Republican party after 9/11 and, essentially, said we don't need to go to court and present evidence. If we think you're a bad person, we're simply going to, in secret, put you on a list and prevent you from boarding a plane. Lot's of people, primarily Muslims, but not only, got put on that list and had no recourse to even find out why they were on the list or get off the list if they thought that they shouldn't be there. What the Democrats are now doing is trying to expand these lists to apply not only to people the government wants to prevent from flying on an airplane, but also from purchasing a gun. What you have is this framework that is now being expanded and has been embraced by both parties that says that the government actually has the right to deprive you of basic rights."
He labelled Democrats as hypocritical for seeking to advance laws they consistently opposed during the Bush administration.
"The Democrats have been opposed to so many things when Bush was President that they, since 2009, stand up and cheer when President Obama does them. I know that because I was working on civil liberties during the Bush Administration. Things like droning people to death, even Americans, on the grounds that they're terrorists without having to go to court and present evidence. Obviously, not just keeping Guantanamo open, but continuing to imprison people without charges. These are all things, certainly spying on people without warrants, that Democrats pretended to oppose when George Bush was in the Oval Office that they now either quietly acquiesce to or vocally support now that there is a Democrat in power."
Greenwald emphasizes that the infringement on our civil liberties is a problem that exists in both parties and needs to be eradicated before it moves ahead any further.
"It's so important not to allow this really toxic mentality to take hold in our political culture. If you read the Constitution, it's actually not complicated in this regard. It says that nobody shall be deprived the right to life, liberty or property without due process of law. What the Democrats are doing, what the FBI is saying, a what lot of Republicans are agreeing with, is that it's now incumbent upon the government, not only to punish people who have done things that are wrong, but also to punish people and restrict people who look to the government like they might in the future do something wrong."
for more features.