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Etching Depicts Fight Between Reps. Lyon and Griswold
Debate Comparison

Censoring Criticism

After 9/11, Congress passed laws that expanded surveillance powers to protect the country. As in other times of war, we have struggled to balance ensuring safety with protecting civil liberties.

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60-90 minutes
  • Constitution
  • National Security
  • Politics
  • War
  • 9-12
  • College/University

You're Exploring Freedom of Expression

Is criticism subject to censorship?

Etching Depicts Fight Between Reps. Lyon and Griswold

1798: Sedition Act Reins in Newly Established Freedoms

Congress makes criticism of the government a crime for which offenders can be fined or jailed.


2015: Debating the USA PATRIOT Act

Congress must balance protecting national security and citizens' privacy as it considers renewing the act that gave the government more power to combat terrorism.

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