Some Observations on the Loyalty-Security Program

Lloyd K. Garrison
1955 The University of Chicago Law Review  
J AM GOING to talk tonight about the procedures of the federal government in dealing with loyalty and security risk cases. I can sum up my general position by saying that I regard an effective security program as essential in the posture of world events today; but that in my opinion the present program works needless injustice upon innocent men and women, and by its excesses impairs some of the most vital sources of our national strength; and that substantial reforms can and must be made which
more » ... must be made which will not weaken our security but will actually promote it. The security program in its entirety is much broader than the segment of it which I shall be talking about. It includes all sorts of measures besides procedures for dealing with accused people. These measures include security checks of all federal employees, both civilian and military, running into the millions; security programs administered by war contractors and also some non-war contractors, like the moving picture industry; requirements for loyalty oaths which numerous states and municipalities exact from teachers and other public servants; congressional investigations and investigations by state legislative committees; and various laws both state and federal dealing with espionage and sabotage and with membership and activities in subversive organizations. This far-flung security system has resulted in the building up of a large establishment of secret police, the creation of a new profession of security officers with vested interests in perpetuating the existing regimes, the discouragement of some people from entering the service of the government, and the spreading abroad of a sense of timidity and fear-fear of speaking out publicly, fear even of speaking out privately on controversial topics, and fear of joining associations and organizations which have anything to do with controversial subjects. These
doi:10.2307/1598243 fatcat:pc2ynlqrozdi5djkyrkyjejghy