Friday, December 16, 2005

Patriot Act R.I.P.

Most people who support or oppose the patriot act don't know a whole lot about it, I'm guessing. Those who support it say, more or less, that the government needs new and nastier tools in its arsenel to prevent another Sept. 11. Opposers are all about we're sacrificing our civil liberties to a big brother government.

OK, so what have you heard about which civil liberties are in jeapordy? They can see your library records, and what books you bought at Barnes & Noble, those are biggies for the left. Some phone taps can be done without warrants, right? What else? Got anything else?

Seems to me, the difference between tapping your phones now vs. before the act if you are a suspected terrorist is that in before, a judge had to get involved and issue a subpeaona. Slow right? Seems like we need to be able to act fast, be smarter, know more, after 9/11. Seems that way to me anyway.

I'm not even saying that the Patriot Act was this grand thing that represented the epitome of anti-terrorism, but rather that I think we all need to realize, after Sept. 11, that you can't have your idealism and eat it too. At some point, some government agency charged with protecting us from, say, nuclear attack by terrorists, will not have been able to do its job fast enough due to concerns over civil liberties. Then poof, there goes Boston.

As a largely libterarian individual, I honestly don't understand why certain liberties are supposed to be guarded so zealously (book records, certain free speech cases) and others are so easily discarded (2nd ammendment, equal taxation).

You want protection from terrorists? Give me the second ammendment back and to hell with the library records.


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