Click here to hear Jo’s interview with John Whitehead.
On the Jo Painter Show we often talk about freedom vs security, where is the trade-off line? The compromised information from the NSA, the massive culling and storing of personal data, drones in our personal airspace … do we have any reasonable expectation of privacy anymore? In “A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State“, John Whitehead, President of The Rutherford Institute, argues that the American people are in grave danger of losing their basic freedoms. The Constitution – and in particular the Bill of Rights – is being undermined on virtually every front. America’s openness and freedom that were once the hallmarks of our society are now in peril. Whitehead charts the transition from a society governed by “We the People” to a state governed more and more by the strong arm of the law. Once a society that valued individual liberty and privacy, in recent years, our culture has quietly accepted surveillance cameras, police and drug-sniffing dogs in our children’s schools, national databases that track our finances and activities, sneak-and-peek searches of our homes without our knowledge or consent, and anti-terrorism laws that turn average Americans into suspects. In A Government of Wolves, Whitehead posits that our nation is at a critical juncture in addressing the growing power of the state versus the retention of personal freedoms. John W. Whitehead is an attorney and author who has written, debated and practiced widely in the area of constitutional law and human rights. Widely recognized as one of the nation’s most vocal and involved civil liberties attorneys, Whitehead’s approach to civil liberties issues has earned him numerous accolades and accomplishments. Whitehead’s concern for the persecuted and oppressed led him, in 1982, to establish The Rutherford Institute, a nonprofit civil liberties and human rights organization whose international headquarters are located in Charlottesville, Virginia. Deeply committed to protecting the constitutional freedoms of every American and the integral human rights of all people, The Rutherford Institute has emerged as a prominent leader in the national dialogue on civil liberties and human rights and a formidable champion of the Constitution. Whitehead serves as the Institute’s president and spokesperson.