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    • During this coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, the United States DOJ (Department Of Justice) is seeking new emergency powers that includes tighter restrictions on the borders and most notably, the ability to detain people indefinitely without trial. More specifically, the proposal is that the Attorney General could tell the chief judges to suspend court proceedings during emergencies and basically broaden their powers. In addition, there are other proposals like forcing defendants to subject themselves to a trail via video teleconferencing as opposed to getting the right to represent themselves in person in a court of law. 

      Obviously, the concerns that people are having have to deal with the right to a fair and speedy trial. America prides itself on having a fair judicial system and these proposals seem to fly in the face of what the United States is supposed to be about. 

      Given that the House of Representatives is controlled by Democrats, it’s unlikely that any of these changes or laws. Still it’ll be interesting to see what kind of powers Trump and the White House try to evoke during this crisis. 

      (Image Credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

    • This is a tough call for me. I'm a long-time supporter of the ACLU and civil liberties. But living in Madrid, it's clear that the best hope for minimizing damage requires a massive effort, closer to WWII mobilization than anything I've seen in my lifetime. The problem is, the Trump administration has been so consistently corrupt that it's hard to trust that they will not abuse additional power; in fact, you can pretty much count on it. It will be up to the Dems in the House to make sure that any new legislation has built-in safeguards, though I wouldn't count on them being effective.