Once the beacon of freedom in the world, a role model for democracy, America has been a vital and dynamic force in helping to bring greater democracy to our world. Unfortunately, since 2001 its Administration has failed to live up to the very Constitution it is founded upon and certainly, it has failed the American people. As brutal as this may sound, and I am quite sure that I am now offending some very loyal Americans, sadly, the American governance has planted the seeds which have diminished the very democracy which they claim to protect.
I am not anti-American, I assure you of that. I lived there for over thirty years and I love the country, and it is purely out of love and respect for what that nation stands for, and the very reason I was attracted to live there (I am Canadian by birth) – America was the beacon of freedom and democracy in the world.
However, that flame has diminished and is becoming less visible because of the compromises entered into the system by those responsible for protecting it – and who claim to be doing so in the name of “national security”. Sadly, it is hypocrisy of the worst kind, that its political leaders and heads of intelligence and other facets of the government, stand up and declare their purity of heart when in fact, they are beguiling Americans into believing that all the necessary surveillance of their phones, emails and such, is necessary to ensure they “can walk the streets safely”.
President Obama is on record as recently having stated the following in response to Edward Snowden’s exposure of NSA – the National Security Agency secretive operations to collect information on American citizens:
“You can’t have 100% security and also then have 100% privacy. We’re going to have make choices as a society.”
By his very words, he has reinterpreted the Constitution of America. He has announced that he supports a “new” system wherein government spying and violation of its citizen’s rights, is a necessary element in order to “protect” the nation. He also says that this is a matter of “choice” and yet, to-date, every change in policy and law within America, permitting its intelligence community the right to violate the privacy rights of Americans, has been invoked without the consent, nor even putting the matter to the vote of the citizens. After 9-11, the Bush Administration ushered in an entirely new agency, Homeland Security and a new law, the Patriot Act, a contradiction in terms since in fact the Patriot Act is anything but, for it allows America’s intelligence community to spy on anyone they deem “a suspect”. In fact, since 9/11, there is reportedly over 700,000 Americans now listed on a “watch list” as suspected terrorists or threats to national security, and these people are not even aware of the fact that they have been listed as potential enemies of the very state to whom they pay their taxes.
America has planted the seeds of dictatorship, and though President Obama would no doubt laugh it off, saying that no such extreme measures have been invoked, if one watches the various interviews with him (see link above) one comes to realize that he has declared himself an advocate of privacy invasion in the name of national security. And one only need to look ahead, to see a plausible future, where either Obama, or another administration, invoke policy changes, directly against the Constitution, which make even more stringent reforms towards “national security”.
As to terrorism, they need only to stoke the flames of sensationalism in this arena to make it seem plausible and pervasive, whereas in fact, deaths from auto accidents EVERY month in America alone far exceed any threat that terrorism presents to the world at large. It is an inflated and demonstrably created scenario, one designed for control purposes – but that is a subject for yet another time.
Unfortunately, the beast which has been created is the same colour and shape as any past oppressive system – the minute that the governing bodies start talking about “national security” as paramount to individual privacy and rights, then what in fact distinguishes such a mentality from a communist Russia, a totalitarian state, or Orwell’s “Big Brother”.
Every oppressive system of government started by violating just ONE piece of individual rights, carving out a foothold in the mountain of human rights, and with that they forged new laws, enacted violent changes to deal with “circumstances” for the “good of the many” and eventually, a free people were slaves to a system.
Whistle blowers such as Edward Snowden, while profiled as an “enemy of the state” for exposing the government’s secrets, is in fact, a hero. If in fact, any other private agency, corporation or entity were engaged in similar crimes, they would be treated and prosecuted by the law. But the US government has redefined this matter, couching it all in terms which simply justify the end.
The disintegration of democracy in America is the real impending disaster – and it behoves all of us to not only be vigilant on this matter, but to demand a change, to insist upon transparency, and to ensure, by any means, that our governments do not, and CANNOT ever pass laws and changes of policy regarding our privacy and our freedom. Freedom means FREE FROM, it does not mean, free “except for”. It does not, by definition, permit any kind of restrictions, marginalization or interpretation by ANYONE. Any administration that feels entitled to do so, to redefine that freedom in order to accomplish its ends, is in fact inept and incompetent to hold such office, and as such, their campaign platform was a lie, because they declared their competence to a nation of people who voted them in, and then, they violated the trust. As such, according to the Constitution, such Administration should be requested to step down from office and a new administration installed which will in fact protect the rights of the people it serves above all else. Any other stance is simply beguile and duplicity.
America needs to be led, not terrorized into acquiescence.