Ben Wizner is the Director of ACLU’s Speech, Privacy & Technology Project, which is dedicated to protecting and expanding the First Amendment freedoms of expression, association, and inquiry; expanding the right to privacy and increasing the control that individuals have over their personal information; and ensuring that civil liberties are enhanced rather than compromised by new advances in science and technology. He has litigated numerous cases involving post-9/11 civil liberties abuses, including challenges to airport security policies, government watchlists, extraordinary rendition, and torture. He has appeared regularly in the media, testified before Congress, and traveled several times to Guantanamo Bay to monitor military commission proceedings.

Ben will be joining us in Milwaukee for some events around the Milwaukee International Film Fest.  The opening night of the festival features the film “1971.”  The documentary recounts the story of a group of citizen activists who, during the height of the Vietnam War, broke into their local FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania, and stole hundreds of pages of confidential documents.  They were never caught, and leaked the documents to the press, exposing the FBI’s extensive surveillance of the antiwar and civil rights movements.  The film raises questions that—in the age of Edward Snowden and Julian Assange—seem more important than ever.  What does the public have a right to know?  And what, if any, limits are there to a free and unfettered press?

After 1971: The Media and Freedom of Information—Join us at Marquette University for a special On the Issues event, held in conjunction with this year’s Milwaukee Film Festival.   Our conversation will feature the attorney for Edward Snowden, the ACLU’s Ben Wizner; Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Dan Bice; and the vice-president of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, attorney Christa Westerberg.