Thu Jun 20, 2013, 04:13 PM
TakeALeftTurn (316 posts)
The existential threat to American Democracy from the massive NSA spying capabilities
The NSA Mass Surveillance programs are actually even more of a FIRST amendment issue than even the 4th - the right to privacy.
Journalists are already worried about how much the NSA is spying on them and being careful what they write and what they talk about over the phone.
The swapping of thoughts, ideas and stories by journalists is healthy, the suppression of it is not.
Political activists such as Occupy, Climate Change and Keystone are worried about the same thing.
One of the fundamental rights in any democracy is the right to peaceful protest.
It keeps the government in check.
The main purpose of the NSA Mass Surveillance programs is to blackmail and intimidate any form of dissent against the government.
Democracies only survive if there is free information, a free press and people are comfortable in speaking out or protesting.
America now ranks number 32 for press freedoms
Our democracy is existentially threatened by these massive surveillance programs.
The risk of abuse now or in the near future are too great.
The time to speak out is NOW.
Unwarranted government surveillance is an intrusion on basic human rights that threatens the very foundations of a democratic society.
Tim Berners Lee
The National Security Agency's] capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything: telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn’t matter. There would be no place to hide.
Senator Frank Church, 1975
Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.
UN Declaration on Human Rights
Democracy requires an informed citizenry in order to function properly, and transparency and accountability are essential parts of that. That means knowing what our government is doing to us, in our name.
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