Congratulations, conspiracy theorists. You’ve missed the boat once again. While you were busy trying to link President Obama to a massive cover-up at Benghazi, accusing the administration of using the Sandy Hook massacre to ban guns, or still saying 9/11 was an inside job, some real shit has gone down right under your noses.
On Thursday, word came out that the NSA (National Security Agency) has been gathering the phone records of Verizon customers, and who knows for what purpose? They say, of course, that it is to “keep us safe,” and that it’s all justified under the Patriot Act. No word yet on how knowing who I call, when I call them, and for how long we spoke prevents a terrorist attack. But, does it matter? Are we, as Americans, not entitled to some semblance of privacy?
Furthermore, the Supreme Court ruled recently that it is perfectly reasonable to take a DNA sample from someone arrested for a “serious crime,” and store that information in a national databank. What exactly a “serious crime” constitutes isn’t clear. Murder? Rape? Sure. But why was this woman’s DNA taken after being arrested at a peace rally? And all this without being charged, much less convicted?
Big Brother, indeed.
Many folks seem perfectly content to watch television and just let their government do what they like. As long as there is food in the fridge and American Idol isn’t interrupted, they feel safe and secure in their homes. Perhaps they don’t use Verizon as their cellular provider, or maybe they just figure if they have done nothing wrong, then they have nothing to worry about.
But that’s the wrong way to think about it. How many of us would be fine with regular warrantless searches of our homes? What if the police said they need to check your home phone records because maybe you know someone who knows someone who may have committed a crime? After all, you have nothing to hide, right? So let them in. Your government is here to serve and protect you.
Yeah fucking right.
You don’t have to be a conservative or a liberal to be skeptical of increased government powers. You just have to be a civically-minded citizen, and possibly be willing to get a little mad. As it stands, there is still no evidence that Obama covered up any malfeasance in Benghazi, you still have unlimited access to weapons of war at gun dealers around the country, and the 9/11 Truth movement continues to look more and more pathetic. But while we’ve been boasting about our right to know and our freedom of information, a few other rights we were taking for granted just got a little less secure.
I’m pretty pissed off. What about you?