The headline asks the question: "Who took our rights away from us?"
The knee jerk reaction - even mine - is "The Republicans, of course."
The Internet is a wonderful collector of information. Some sources more trustworthy than others.
But the Congressional Record is pretty reliable.
Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995, US Senate bills S.390 and S.761.[then-Senator) Joe Biden introduced the bill on behalf of the Clinton Administration on Feb. 10, 1995. The bill was co sponsored by senators
Robert J. Kerrey,
Barbara A. Mikulski and
Representative Chuck Schumer sponsored the bill (H.R. 896) in the US House of Representatives. Following closely on the heels of Executive Order 12947, prohibiting transactions with terrorists, President Clinton described the bill as a "comprehensive effort to strengthen the ability of the United States to deter terrorist acts and punish those who aid or abet any international terrorist activity in the United States" and requested "the prompt and favorable consideration of this legislative proposal by the Congress".
Above from Wikipedia; sources carefully cited on the Wikipedia page.
Another well-sourced bit of information about the Patriot Act of 2001, an expanded version of the liberals' Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995 is found on the WashingtonBlog.com page under the title Joe Biden Drafted the Core of the Patriot Act in 1995 … Before the Oklahoma City Bombing
Granted, Republican Geo. W. Bush ("Bush 2") signed the Patriot Act into law in 2001 after 9-11-2001, but Biden himself draws parallels between his 1995 bill and its 2001 cousin. “I drafted a terrorism bill after the Oklahoma City bombing. And the bill John Ashcroft sent up was my bill,” he said when the Patriot Act was being debated, according to the New Republic, which described him as “the Democratic Party’s de facto spokesman on the war against terrorism.”
The apparently right-wing Center For National Security Studies describes the Biden/Clinton Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995 bill as a mixture of: provisions eroding constitutional and statutory due process protections, selective federalization -- on political grounds -- of state crimes (minus state due process rules), discredited ideas from the Reagan and Bush Administrations, and the extension of some of the worst elements of crime bills of the recent past. and then goes on to list what it perceives as the 1995 bill's aims.
Remember who signed off on the Biden/Clinton bill. (If you forgot, go back a few paragraphs.)
The web site educateyouself.org lists which senators and representatives voted on the Patriot Act (for and against) following 9-11-2001. The site also identifies who voted on the reauthorizing the Act in 2006. The 2001 bill had support on both sides of the aisle.
What started as a liberal attack on American's civil rights ended up with bipartisan support - but we still hear clicks when we talk on the phone and we have to wonder why an email takes hours to arrive. Worse, we have lost the right to face our accusers and, in some instances, to even know of what we are accused.
The impact of the Muslim terrorist attack on 9-11-201 lingers on.