Isn’t it funny how the most hideous government acts always have the most misleading names. Over here in the UK it was the ‘religious hatred act’ designed, we’re led to believe, to increase religious freedoms, but in reality it does quite the opposite. In the United States you have one of the most hideous legislations with a name a horribly divisive name, the Patriot Act. If you don’t support it then what the hell kind of American are you!

I found a funny site with a game called “The Patriot Act: Home Version” styled much the same as monopoly. The game is not for sale but was distributed as a political commentary and teaching aid in relation to the Patriot Act which it calls “a poorly thought out piece of reactionary legislation”, legislation that came about in just eight days following 9/11.

According to the Department of Justice own website the Patriot Act “eliminates barriers” in law by broadly expanding law enforcement’s surveillance and investigative powers. It was recently renewed with dozens of what the DoJ call “additional safeguards to protect Americans’ privacy and civil liberties.” and “efforts to protect both Americans and the values that Americans cherish.”

However the act is hugely controversial. It gives far reaching search and surveillance to domestic law enforcement and foreign intelligence agencies and eliminates checks and balances that previously gave courts the opportunity to ensure that those powers were not abused in way such as the recent ‘domestic spying’ revelations.

“The Patriot Act: Home Version, is a game inspired by this historic abuse of governmental powers and its effect on society.” Say the games creators Graphix4change which is an artistic and educational project designed to promote social and political change through the use of design and satire.

“The object of the game is simple: the last player to maintain his or her civil liberties wins. The equipment consists of a board, dice and tokens. There is a Homeland Security deck, a Free Speech deck, play Civil Liberties and a Vault to deposit lost liberties into.”

The game is available from the Graphix4change website.

Get the Patriot Act : Home Version
A breakdown of the Patriot Act, Freedom Act, and FISA
What the DoJ say about the Patriot Act