Freedom House Turns Spotlight on Freedom in the United States

Washington, D.C.
Freedom House, which is best known for its annual survey of the state of freedom around the world , turns its full attention to the United States for the first time in its new study: TODAY’S AMERICAN: How Free?  (Rowman & Littlefield; embargoed release May 5, 2008). The report examines whether America is sacrificing its essential values in the war against terror and scrutinizes the state of freedom and justice in post-9/11 America.
 
“One of the most important attributes of any democracy is the ability for those within it to look honestly at its strengths and weaknesses and then work to make it better,” said Freedom House Research Director Arch Puddington, who co-edited the book. “The findings in this report are not only important for Americans, but for everyone around the globe influenced by the world’s only superpower.”

TODAY’S AMERICAN: How Free? assesses how curbs on civil liberties—including the extension of executive authority without checks and balances, extraordinary rendition, mistreatment of prisoners, and warrantless wiretaps—are impacting Americans and how they compare to previous eras of crisis or conflict in U.S. history.  However, the book finds that some of the most serious challenges are those that pre-date 9/11, including racial inequality, a lack of political competition and the handling of immigration.

Despite these challenges, the report finds that Americans still enjoy one of the highest levels of freedom in the world. Other topics examined in the book include:
  • The rule of law
  •  Money and politics
  • Press freedom
  • Election reform
  • Effects of globalization
Freedom House Vice Chairman of the Board Stuart Eizenstat will join Arch Puddington and Thomas Melia, co-editors of TODAY’S AMERICAN: How Free?, at a press conference and panel event on Monday, May 5 at the National Press Club, 9:00-10:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, First Amendment Lounge.  All members of the press are invited to attend.  Advance review copies of TODAY’S AMERICAN: How Free? are available on a strictly embargoed basis.

For more information about the event, to receive a review copy or to set up an interview with Stuart Eizenstat, Arch Puddington or Tom Melia, contact Aric Caplan, 301-770-0550 or aric@caplancommunications.com  
 
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