Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 4th Oct 2011 13:31 UTC
Legal A few days ago, several countries signed ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. As you are probably aware, ACTA was drafted up in secret, and is basically Obama/Biden's attempt to impose the US' draconian pro-big business/big content protection laws on the rest of the world ('sign it, or else'). The European Parliament still has to vote on it, and as such, Douwe Korff, professor of international law at the London Metropolitan University, and Ian Brown senior research fellow at the University of Oxford, performed a 90-page study, with a harsh conclusion: ACTA violates fundamental human rights.
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Due process isn't a right, it is a procedural restriction on the government to prevent it from acting arbitrarily and in conflict with the law, so that is doesn't illegally infringe on actual rights. So in other words: you don't have a right to due process, you have rights and the government cannot infringe on those rights without first following the due process of law.

As far as I know, at least in the US, it is a right, inscribed in the Fifth Amendment to the US Constitution (the amendment being part of the "United States Bill of Rights"), which reads, in part:

"[No person shall] be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law".

Now of course I am not a constitutional lawyer, so I might be wrong. After all, all I do is read what the letters say in English, not Legalese...

[edit: typos]

Edited 2011-10-05 09:41 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

kittynipples Member since:

Your citation is exactly how i phrased it. Due process is a restriction on arbitrary government action in order to protect rights (life, liberty, property, etc.), not a right per se. There is a large semantic difference between the two. Similar to how requiring a warrant to search your home is a restriction placed on the power of government, it is not itself an individual right. And in following the legal requirement to acquire a valid warrant, the government is meeting its due process obligation.

Reply Parent Score: 1

AnyoneEB Member since:

The Bill of Rights is a bit odd in that respect (for some explanation as to why, see the Federalist Papers: ). Basically, your interpretation is essentially why some of the authors of the US Constitution did not want a Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights is very explicitly about the government, not the people: it does not list rights the people have, it lists (some examples of) rights the people already have independent of the Bill of Rights which the government is not allowed take away.

Of course, this is philosophy and Bill of Rights is not always interpreted as I described.

Reply Parent Score: 1