NRA Explore
APPEARS IN News

NRA Files Friend of the Court Brief in Appeal of NSA Spying Case

Friday, March 14, 2014

This week, NRA filed a brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.  The brief supports the American Civil Liberties Union's request for reversal of a decision by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York that upheld the National Security Agency's data collection program.

We previously reported on the lower court case in an article available here.  That article contains a more detailed description of NRA's arguments, but they generally make two major points.  First, that the NSA's mass data collection violates the First Amendment's freedom of association protection because individuals will be chilled from joining certain groups – like NRA – that have been the target of hostility by others, including certain public officials, and identify their members' private social, political, or religious beliefs to the government.  The second line of argument focuses on how the data collection programs could undermine privacy protections in federal law that prohibit creating a registry of firearms or firearm owners. 

Much of the government's arguments have focused on the fact that the surveillance program only collects metadata and that the content of communications still remain private.  However, a recent study by two graduate students at Stanford University shows how much private information can be gleaned about an individual from even a small amount of metadata.  The study collected telephone metadata on volunteers over a period of just a few months.  The authors hypothesized that they would not be able to identify any specific information about the participants because of the small amount of data collected, but as they put it: "We were wrong.  We found that phone metadata is unambiguously sensitive, even in a small population and over a short time window. We were able to infer medical conditions, firearm ownership, and more, using solely phone metadata."

On the specific issue of firearm ownership, the authors of the study determined that one of the volunteers likely was interested in firearms and specifically in AR-15 pattern rifles.  This information was then confirmed to be true by the study participant.  This type of information is particularly sensitive at a time when some government officials at both the state and federal levels are showing increasing hostility towards individual gun ownership and when interest in a particular type of firearm may bring an individual under close governmental scrutiny because of that firearm's disfavored status.   

NRA will continue to support this case and others that serve to protect the privacy interests of gun owners and will keep you informed of further developments on this issue.

TRENDING NOW

News  

Friday, July 31, 2015

Gun Control "Study" Misses the Mark Badly on Lawful Self-Defense

Likely as a response to the growing number of American’s who have come to realize that having a ...

News  

Friday, July 31, 2015

Take Two Losses and Call Me in the Morning: Florida Court Again Sides With Patient Privacy, Hands Nosy Doctors Second Defeat

Anti-gun doctors may need to get their own blood pressure checked after the U.S. Court of Appeals for ...

News  

Friday, July 31, 2015

Los Angeles City Council Targets Law-Abiding With Magazine Ban

Back in 2013, the city of Los Angeles’s city council proposed an ordinance banning the possession of magazines ...

News  

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

President’s Column: If Gun Restrictions Were Applied To Technology, They Would Not Compute

What if computer owners were the object of Bloomberg’s lies? What would be the public reaction if the ...

Friday, July 31, 2015

Bill Seeks to Choke Off Anti-Gun "Choke Point"

Only July 30, The House Financial Services Committee marked up and passed out of committee H.R. 766, the ...

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, July 31, 2015

Famed Law Professor, Defense Attorney Latest to Suggest Second Amendment Needs to Go

The legal profession is full of blowhards, egomaniacs, hypocrites, and elitists, but even so, rarely are all those ...

News  

Friday, July 24, 2015

Gun Control Group Would Endanger Military by Politicizing Firearm Procurement Process

As if misguided anti-gun policies that leave our fighting men and women defenseless stateside weren’t enough, some gun ...

News  

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

NRA Thanks Alabama Attorney General for Defending Gun Rights

The National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) today commended Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange for upholding the Second Amendment rights of Alabamans. After reviewing and investigating complaints from citizens about state and local ...

Thursday, July 30, 2015

California: City of Los Angeles’ Magazine Confiscation Ordinance Heading to Mayor’s Office

Unfortunately, on Tuesday, July 28, 2015, the City Council voted unanimously to adopt the amended, yet still useless, ...

News  

Friday, July 31, 2015

When Bureaucrats Make “Sport” of Fundamental Liberties, Congress Must Act

In May, I discussed the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ varying interpretations of the phrase “sporting ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.