What is Habeas Corpus?
The principal behind Habeas Corpus is a person cannot be held against their will without a proper cause, meaning a person cannot be jailed without having charges against them. Article 1 Section 9 of the US Constitution states, "The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it"
A New York City judge ruled to suspend this, making it so people arrested can now be held for over 24 hours without being charged for a crime. This came after advocacy groups sued NYPD for holding 92 protesters from the George Floyd protests for over 24 hours without charging them.
Why it matters
Going forward this means that anyone who is arrested can be held indefinitely without the ability to advocate that they are being detained and imprisoned illegally. This also implies that anyone can be arrested, whether you are protesting or not, because you no longer need a just cause to be held in jail.
Civil liberties protect ourselves from governments using “crises” and “emergencies” as justification to dismantle o… https://t.co/SU9kQqFoMB— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez)1591317257.0
This is not a time where public safety is at great risk and does not call for Habeas Corpus to be suspended at this time. The protests have been mostly peaceful on the side of the protesters and most of the violence has been instigated by the police from the videos I have seen (please click on the links in this paragraph if you wish to see a few). With police brutality being at a high this time, they are a greater threat to public safety. The suspension of Habeas Corpus is not only unconstitutional but, will only further allow them to abuse their power and minorities and people of color will be at even greater risk.
Are they applauding their colleagues for assaulting a 75 year old man, or are they applauding themselves for walkin… https://t.co/MVYZRxLt9O— Kumail Nanjiani (@Kumail Nanjiani)1591471709.0
Completely unmarked officers in riot gear holding protesters blocks away from the White House. No badges. No insign… https://t.co/HhU4SfS8H1— Ben Davis (@Ben Davis)1591245398.0
What to do
This is a major attack on our civil liberties and constitutional rights. The principle of Habeas Corpus is of such great importance to us and our founding fathers that it was the only civil liberty that was viewed important enough to be in the original text of our constitution. It is important to contact our representatives at this time and demand that the suspension be canceled and that action be taken against Judge James Burke for allowing this unconstitutional request from the New York police department.
Please stay safe if going out.
In addition, if you can't make it out to protest here are 23 petitions you can sign to show your support!