Last Thursday I received an email from my daughter, Rachel, a human rights attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights letting me know that she’d won a legal victory. She wrote: “Court just dismissed the indictments against the AETA 4. … Indictments don't get dismissed everyday, so this is a really nice win.”
Actually, I fudged this post’s title a bit. It’s true that my brother’s and my precedent-setting Freedom of Information Act lawsuit in the 1970’s was against the FBI, the Attorney General and other government agencies. However the “other Meeropol” I mention is my daughter Rachel, and the fudge is that she isn’t a plaintiff against the government.
Federal Judge Joseph Tauro put yet another dent in our First Amendment rights two weeks ago when he dismissed a suit brought by five animal rights activists. The activists had claimed that the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) made them fearful of protesting in public against animal abuse committed by corporations, and therefore, impinged upon their First Amendment rights. The law states that anyone can be prosecuted if their actions cause property loss to an animal-related business or laboratory, or who