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‘This stuff freaks me out’: Rep. Rashida Tlaib raises alarm over use of facial recognition as groups demand federal moratorium

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Before detailing her specific concerns about facial recognition technology during a House Oversight Committee hearing on the subject Tuesday, Rep. Rashida Tlaib expressed a sentiment broadly shared by privacy advocates and the general public.

“This stuff freaks me out,” said Tlaib, a Democrat from Michigan. “I’m a little freaked out by facial recognition.”

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Tlaib’s remarks came during the Oversight Committee’s second hearing this year on facial recognition technology as lawmakers grapple with how the software should be regulated—or if it should be used at all.

“You should be freaked out too,” Tlaib tweeted. “The inaccuracy and threat to our privacy is real. The second Oversight hearing on facial recognition technology reveals just how bad this is for all of us.”

As Common Dreams has reported in April, law enforcement agencies are increasingly using facial recognition technology at border crossings and major airports throughout the United States, raising serious concerns among civil liberties groups.

In a letter to the House Oversight Committee ahead of Tuesday’s hearing, a coalition of over 60 groups led by the ACLU called for a “federal moratorium on face recognition for law enforcement and immigration enforcement purposes.”

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“Face recognition gives government agencies the unprecedented power to track who we are, where we go, and who we know,” the letter reads. “This capability threatens to create a world where people are watched and identified as they attend a protest, congregate outside a place of worship, visit a medical provider, or simply go about their daily lives.”

Concerns over the threat facial recognition poses to privacy rights were echoed by lawmakers during Tuesday’s hearing.

“In the Fourth Amendment, our Founding Fathers endowed with us ‘the right of people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures,'” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) said before questioning officials from the TSA and FBI over the use of facial recognition technology at airports, protests, and elsewhere.

When Ocasio-Cortez asked TSA official Austin Gould whether individuals must provide “explicit consent” before their faces are scanned at airports, Gould said, “Passengers have the opportunity to not participate.”

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As digital rights group Fight for the Future pointed out, this “means JetBlue, Delta, and others can record your face without your explicit consent.”

Watch Ocasio-Cortez’s full five minutes of questioning:

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Trump thinks he can create his own healthcare law that will take the issue off the table for Democrats

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One of the significant issues Republicans lost on in 2018 was their nearly decade-long crusade to unmake the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare.

This week Trump will announce that he's running for president again, and he promises a surprise announcement while there. While it's unclear what he intends for the surprise, one thing he is talking about is a better healthcare law than the Democratic one.

According to The New York Times, Trump is "vowing to issue the plan within a month or two, reviving a campaign promise with broad consequences for next year’s contest."

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Donald Trump whines: ‘My life has always been a fight’

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The full interview with President Donald Trump finally aired on ABC Sunday, revealing the shocking way that he views his life.

Trump lamented that he's had such a hard life, as the son of multi-millionaires who paid to get him out of trouble multiple times.

"You're a fighter. You, you, it feels like you're in a constant kind of churn--" host George Stephanopoulos began.

"Yeah, uh, my life has always been a fight," Trump said. "And I enjoy that I guess, I don't know if I enjoy it or not, I guess -- sometimes I have false fights like the Russian witch hunt. That's a false fight. That's a made-up, uh, hoax. And I had to fight that."

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The right-wing scored more in years of Trump than eight years of George W. Bush: report

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President George W. Bush oversaw eight years that restricted rights, banned LGBTQ equality, appointed anti-choice judges and so much more. But under Donald Trump's presidency, social conservatives have managed to roll back any progress made by President Barack Obama's leadership.

A new Axios report listed out any anti-LGBTQ, anti-women and anti-poor policies.

“He campaigned saying that he would be a good friend to LGBT people,” James Esseks, director of the ACLU’s LGBT and HIV Project, told VOX. "Actions speak far louder than words. And what he's done has been a wreck."

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