Author: Molly Kay

ROMSpeaks presents “Going Dark”, featuring Jameel Jaffer

Has the shift towards government secrecy altered our society in irrevocable ways? On November 15th, the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) held their eleventh annual Eva Holtby Lecture on Contemporary Culture. Every year, this event brings powerful voices to the ROM to present provocative and engaging ideas. This year, Jameel Jaffer, Executive Director of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, delivered an insightful lecture that was both thought-provoking and extremely relevant. His lecture, entitled “Going Dark,” explored the phenomenon of government secrecy in terms of what it means for us, both as a society and as individuals. Since...

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ROM Friday Night Live: An Innovative Night at the Museum

The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), conveniently located across the street from Victoria College, is one of the best parts about being a student at the University of Toronto. Aside from free general entry for all students on Tuesdays, the ROM consistently makes an effort to welcome us by offering many exciting opportunities, such as gallery openings, talks, and special events. As a frequent patron of the ROM, I was thrilled to learn about Friday Night Live—a weekly event taking place every Friday from 7pm to 12am, September 30th to November 25th. After hours, the ROM becomes a whole new...

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A Conversation with Global Thinker Jameel Jaffer

On November 15th, the ROM welcomes Jameel Jaffer for the 11th Annual Eva Holtby Lecture on Contemporary Culture. Last week, The Strand sat down with Jaffer to discuss his upcoming lecture, “Going Dark”. In this lecture, Jaffer discusses the legal, political, and social consequences of allowing democratic governments to withhold information about national security from the public.   Jaffer, a civil liberties and human rights attorney, has spent the last 14 years as Deputy Legal Director at the American Civil Liberties Union working on issues of international human rights and arguing cases of national security. Most notably, he is known for litigating a case under the Freedom of Information Act that issued the release of the “torture memos” concerning the torture of prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay and in CIA black sites under the Bush administration.   “Post 9/11, the government has become increasingly more secretive regarding the terms and effects of policies,” Jaffer stated. “As we [the public] become more known by the government through significant technological developments, such as increased mass surveillance programmes, their actions are actually becoming more covert. I find myself concerned with the implications of the intersections of those two trends.”   Confidentiality is a concern for Jaffer, as he is aware of the access the government has to personal information, and what they are able to do with that kind of power. He explains,...

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