The current government considers all USians terrorists unless proven otherwise. Intimidation, once the entertainment of the petty thug, the unregulated police, and the 3rd world dictator, is now institutionalized as a legitimate activity of the US government against the people—all in the name of “security.” Airport gulags, metal detectors, checkpoints in public buildings, bizarre dress codes in schools, drug tests, free speech zones, no fly lists, library snooping, snitch sites, warrantless wire tapping and email reading, press pens, infiltration of political, social, and justice movements, embedded reporters, phony press conferences, the militarization of the police, and taser mania come to mind. Welcome to the United States of Paranoia.
Lizard Chronicles today has a very important blog for all of us who value free speech, free thought, and political dissent: Democracy is a VERB.
As LC points out, “The Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act” can affect all of us. Yes, adoptee rights activists, organizations, searchers,—and even bloggers–could be targeted as terrorists if this Draconian proposal passes. (It’s now in the Senate; the House passed it nearly unanimously)
About 3 years ago in my own state, under the regime of evangelical Christian Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, “Ohio Homeland Security” threatened to prosecute professional adoption searchers and search angels (if they took reimbursement for their expenses) under an obscure and vague law (ORC 4749(3)(a)(9)) that limits adoption searches for “pay”to PIs, who incidentally usually don’t like or know how to do them, and are more than happy to slog them off to people who do know how. With the state’s apparent attempt to redefine privacy as protection from government intrusion and interference in private matters to the government’s duty to protect people’s private communications and financial information (and coincidentally spy on you while they’re protecting you), adopted persons are a prime target for scrutiny. I can hear the knock on the door now.
Please go over to Lizard Chronicles and read Democracy is a VERB and click on the links. Then act.
From Democracy Is Not a Verb:
Maybe you think it’s as benign as the Patriot Act (which is not really benign at all) and that if you are an upstanding, tax-paying citizen, you have nothing to worry about. Think again. Think again, if you are passionate about anything – Pro-Life, Pro-Choice, Pro- or Against the Iraq War, Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestinian, Pro Open Records… it doesn’t matter. If you’re passionate about it (whatever it is), you could be labeled an “enemy combatant.” You or your sons, your daughters, your sisters, brothers, even your mothers or your fathers – all will be at risk if this bill passes.
Addendum: I want to clarify that Ohio Homeland Security did not initiate the investigation. It was brought by a so-called Search Angel on a mission to purify searching by removing paid, experienced professional searchers–who just happen also to advocate for records access. In snitch culture of course, this is perfectly acceptable. Turn in your competitor, your neighbor, your friend with absolutely no repercussion to yourself. In this case, the “Search Angel” shut down one of the few real outlets adopted persons and first families in Ohio have of reconnecting until records are reopened. All for her self-aggrandizement. The precedent for adoptees is scary.
Thank you, Marley. THANK YOU. Since I published that blog post, I have been appalled at the lack of out-clicks on any of the links I provided.
There is nothing more frightening today in the U.S. than apathy. Apathy is how the Nazis corralled and murdered millions of Jews. Apathy. And blind trust, and blind faith. (Read the link “NO, I WILL NOT COMPLY. PERIOD.”
You are right – proponents of open records could be viewed as “enemy combatants” if this bill passes the Senate. We may have to cancel the New Orleans gig.
And that is the least that could happen. The government could decide that ANYONE who protests the political or social status quo is maladjusted and potentially dangerous.
Anyone here involved in GLBT activism? Call your Senators or keep your mouths shut forever and stay out of the streets. Pro Choice? Same deal. It doesn’t matter. We are all at risk if S 1959 passes.
excellent post marley!! I’m working on one right now!!! Thank you julie for showing us this and bringing this to my attention i had NO idea this was even going on….
“We may have to cancel the New Orleans gig.”
The only way to establish a right is to assert it. If anything the passage of this law makes NOLA more necessary, not less.
I have to disagree with your complaints about our system. When a law is passed by a legislature, both the state and private citizens can pursue violations of the law in court. Even obscure laws. If it’s a bad law, then people who care should petition the lawmakers to change the law. But that’s how it works in America, and a court cannot and should not decide that a law is out of date. That’s what lawmakers do.
As for the long list of ways that America is going to hell in a hand basket — with all due respect, these are the same complaints that we on the Right always make when we have a Democrat president. When we have another Democrat in office in a couple years, nearly all of the “civil rights abuses” that Democrats now complain about will continue, and we Republicans will start talking about how the USA is becoming a Communist state. It’s none it true. It’s all a political game we play to demonize each other. I’m sorry to see you participating in it.
joshua, when a Democrat declares US citizens “enemy combatants,” suspends habeas corpus, condones torture, guts the bill of rights and strains our armed forces to the point of sending the national Guard to invade a country that never did us any harm on the basis of blatant lies, rendering them imcapable of helping natural disaster victims at home, I’ll vote Republican. America IS going to Hades in a handbasket. The fact that we’re all watching it go there together and doing very little to stop it doesn’t mean it isn’t going there.
Joshua, do you actually believe that “the people” have any power?
The Republican and Democratic parties and their subsets are all enemies of the people. Back scrathers all, the Dems support this piece of dreck. Each party knows that they need each other to supress the populace, and continue their benovolent corporate dictatorship by “consent.” The US has gone to hell in a handbasket since the election of Lincoln. It will only get worse until the state is smashed, which isn’t about to happen.
It goes on.
America has told Britain it has the right to “kidnap” British citizens if they are wanted for crimes in the United States.