Balancing Individual Privacy Rights and Intelligence Needs: Procedural-Based vs. Distributive-Based Justice Perspectives on the PATRIOT Act

Balancing Individual Privacy Rights and Intelligence Needs: Procedural-Based vs. Distributive-Based Justice Perspectives on the PATRIOT Act

Kathleen S. Hartzel (Duquesne University, USA) and Patrick E. Deegan (Duquesne University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-947-2.ch188
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Abstract

This chapter explores how individuals using different justice perspectives to evaluate the appropriateness of the USA PATRIOT Act will logically arrive at different views on the fairness of the legislation. Some pundits believe the USA PATRIOT Act creates an increased risk for the privacy rights of US citizens. Excerpts from both Department of Justice and ACLU documents concerning the USA PATRIOT Act are presented. An analysis of these excerpts suggests that the Department of Justice applies a procedural justice perspective to demonstrate the fairness of the Act in terms of the way the law will be applied. The ACLU applies an outcome-based justice perspective that focuses on the potential for the Act to disproportionately penalize specific demographic groups. Different justice perspectives lead to different fairness judgments.

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