Tuesday, December 05, 2006
There has been a concern about big government from the inception of the United States. The Constitution is all about assigning specific powers to government and no more. More than one hundred years after the creation of the United States the phrase “Big Brother” arose to describe an overly powerful government threatening the freedom of the people. Now, we do not want to think our government too powerful, for our elected representatives would not consciously try to limit the freedom of the people. That is inconceivable. How could it happen? Why would it happen? Are we as free as the day we were born and as free as the people in 1782 in America?
Without a driver’s license or I.D., we could travel at ease years ago. Now, identification is mandatory because there are terrorists among us. Walking down the street years in the past would not require us show our driver’s license. Now, the police may ask for I.D. They do it to make our lives safer.
Years ago we could just buy a gun and walk out of the store. Now, we must be first fill out government forms giving our social security number because we may be criminals. Government must approve the sale of the gun. But that is for our safety because criminals are among us.
The price of safety is for the government to control more and more- not less and less. Speaking of less and less, there will be fewer street mailboxes because they are a potential target of terrorism, so they are being phased out. Times are changing for your safety.
Now the current driver’s license is being used as the national I.D. card and all drivers’ licenses will be standardized according to federal government law. Each person’s driver’s license will be tied to a federal databank with all the pertinent information available including social security number, tax records, employment and court history, address, telephone number and description. Because foreign terrorists inflicted such horrendous damage on September 11, 2001, we must lose some liberty and have government possess instantaneous information on each of us. Yes, foreigners from the Middle East, primarily Saudi Arabia and Egypt caused this insidious terrorism because we are their enemy by supporting Israel and by meddling in the Middle East in their view. For you see, we are all potential enemies. Instead of profiling those who have harmed this country, we make all Americans bare the brunt of their atrocities.
Any suspicious emails may be scrutinized and your computer may be surreptitiously entered to investigate whether a terrorist network lurks. Don’t worry; you will not be notified if this occurs because the government has special powers now that Congress has passed the Patriot Act. Do you feel safer that our government is in more control so they may protect us from more terror?
Police and the military are becoming more commonplace because there are more of them on the street, at airports, train stations and anywhere the danger of terrorism lurks. Will this make our nation safer? Tens of billions more dollars have been spent on the newly created Homeland Security apparatus. Were we a weak nation without the vast agencies of the FBI, CIA, INS and NSA before September 11th?
Does anyone wonder whether the Central Intelligence Agency, Immigration and Naturalization Service, National Security Agency and other law enforcement agencies had done their jobs well for the past twenty years would we have to surrender more and more of our liberty today? Had our laws been enforced, especially immigrations laws would we even have had September 11th? Why must our lives be scrutinized when the agencies of government may have failed us? Why give government more power when they may have not used the awesome power they already have to be effective on our behalf?
For many Americans our government is doing everything it can to protect us. Many Americans also believe that to be safe we must have more government control of our lives. Do you feel safer today with ever more government power over you? Is there any danger that government will abuse its newly expanded powers? The proof is slowly emerging that more and more innocent Americans are being swept into the panic pool of government ineptitude disrupting ordinary lives with commonplace government practices.
The Patriot Act and the Military Commissions Act may have been passed in desperation, out of panic. If government chips our liberties away, we may never get them back. Doing things out of desperation is unwise. Why put the onus and burden on the American people first? Why wasn’t the focus on our government first? Did the law enforcement and intelligence agencies do anything wrong prior to 9/11? Were they negligent? Did they fully enforce our laws, including immigration laws? Why wasn’t there scrutiny on tracking visa holders from areas of the world where American policies are considered highly controversial by large segments or the majority of the local population? Was the 9/11 Commission a whitewash for the two majority parties to protect them and their administration of our government?
Before the American people’s freedom is tampered with our government itself must be tampered and poked and examined by the Congress and President, and finally the American people with the help of a free press.
Our founding father’s lives were on the line during the Revolutionary War that created and spawned this country. We need to protect our heritage, not slice it away inch by inch, yard by yard until we are a shell of the nation that existed at the outset and beginning of this great country.