BELFAST - For many constitutional watchers, the Bill of Rights are in danger. That will be the message of speakers Debra Sweet and Michael Figura, who will be on a tour of Maine from April 19-21. After speaking in Bangor on April 19, Sweet and Figura will travel to Belfast to speak at the Belfast Free Library on Saturday, April 20 at 2:30 p.m. On April 21, they will wrap up their Maine tour in Portland.
Debra Sweet, the national spokesperson for the group, The World Can't Wait, and Michael Figura, a staff member of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, will focus their remarks on the Patriot Act and the "indefinite detention" provision of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Each event will also address what local residents can do to protect their own civil liberties and stop threats to their safety and security. Group discussion will follow each presentation.
According to tour organizer Jon Olsen of Jefferson, the NDAA "permits incarceration for an indefinite period with NO trial, judge, jury, evidence, or witnesses for the defense against their flagrant abuse of Constitutional power." Olsen sees the events as a way to educate the public about the threats to their civil liberties and encourage "justified dissent" and resistance to the NDAA.
The programs are sponsored by a number of Maine organizations, including Veterans for Peace, Peaceworks of Brunswick, the Peace and Justice Group of Waldo County, Peace Action Maine, Midcoast Peace and Justice Committee, the Maine Green Independent Party, Code Pink, Americans Who Tell the Truth, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine.
All events are free, with donations requested. For more information on the Belfast presentation, contact the Belfast Free Library at 338-3884.