USA Patriot Act – Pros and Cons

Essay by mattsmommaCollege, UndergraduateA, March 2009

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The USA Patriot Act, also known as the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act, was signed into law on October 26, 2001.

"The Patriot Act is divided into 10 separate sections known as 'titles.' Each title contains numerous Sections that further clarify the provisions of the title. The titles and sections delineate new powers that are provided to the federal government in order to facilitate investigation of terrorist activities, along with the relevant checks and balances that are designed to prevent abuse of power." (Fritscher, 2007) "The USA-Patriot Act is one of the most consequential laws that have been passed by the Congress. In many respects it made fundamental, and I believe much needed, changes in the authorities given to our intelligence and law enforcement agencies to prevent, and if necessary respond to, terrorism." (The America's Intelligence Wire)The Patriot Act was carefully designed to help prevent further terrorist attacks from happening.

Previously, it was believed that because of bureaucratic red tape, information that was vitally important was missed, and had it been seen or used, the events of September 11, 2001 could have been prevented. (Fritscher, 2007) Basically, the government wanted to be sure that if another attack were in the works, it could be stopped before it was able to happen.

Some of the pros of this Act are that it "streamlines communications between varying agencies that can work together to investigate terrorist activities." (Fritscher, 2007) It makes it easier and less burdensome to investigate and use surveillance. The Act also provides higher amounts of money for victims and their families of the terrorist attacks. It also helps rebuild buildings and infrastructures that were damaged by terrorist attacks. (Fritscher, 2007) There are a lot of people who...