"For the first time, a federal court has
recognized that when the government bans
Americans from flying and smears them as
suspected terrorists, it deprives them of
constitutionally protected liberties, and they
must have a fair process to clear their names.
The No Fly List procedures violate due process
because the government refuses to provide any
explanation or a hearing for innocent Americans
to challenge their inclusion, and we look
forward to making that case to the court."
The national ACLU, along with its affiliates in
Oregon, Southern California, Northern
California, and New Mexico, filed the lawsuit in
June 2010. It represents 13 U.S. citizens,
including four military veterans, who are on the
No Fly List and banned from flying to or from
the U.S. or over American airspace. In July
2012, the 9th Circuit Appeals Court reversed the
district court's dismissal of the case on
jurisdictional grounds, and now the district
court is considering the case on its merits.
In Wednesday’s ruling, U.S. District Judge Anna
J. Brown wrote, "Although there are perhaps
viable alternatives to flying for domestic
travel within the continental United States such
as traveling by car or train, the Court
disagrees with Defendants’ contention that
international air travel is a mere convenience
in light of the realities of our modern world.