The George A. Smathers Library and the Levin College of Law will host events to celebrate Constitution Day today. Both events are open and free to the public.
UF’s Levin College of Law will have a panel discussion at the Martin H. Levin Advocacy Center starting at noon, with prominent speakers talking about “National Security and Privacy After Snowden.”
Smathers Library will have tables set up on the Library West Colonnade from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Attendees can write on a board what they think should be changed or added to the U.S. Constitution.
“It’s a simple exercise to bring awareness to the constitution,” said Barbara Hood, director of communications at Smathers Library. “A lot of people don’t know what’s in the constitution.”
Constitution Day is a way to commemorate the signing of the constitution, Hood said. Pocket constitutions and cake will also be given out at the Smathers event.
UF’s Levin College of Law will have speakers such as Senior District Judge Roger Vinson of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida and Sandra Chance, a UF journalism professor and executive director of the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information.
Jon Mills, director for UF Law’s Center for Governmental Responsibility, said the panel discussion will allow the audience to ask the speakers questions. Mills will also take part in the conversation.
The law panel will explore issues such as wiretapping citizens and the NSA collecting data on phone calls, Mills said.
“The constitution protects every citizen from search and seizure, and the government can’t wiretap without a warrant,” he said. “We hope interested grad students and undergraduate students come to see it.”
[A version of this story ran on page 8 on 9/17/2014 under the headline "UF hosts Constitution Day"]