I have been airing my litany of complaints since Ed Snowden disclosed NSA programs under the auspices of the Obama Administration. None of it is pretty. The media circus has come to town and they seem to have no intention of leaving. Ed Snowden’s detailed disclosure of NSA programs demonstrated America not only allows for spying on its “enemies” (I have to wonder though if things played out differently post WWII, how many enemies would we actually have), it also allows for spying on our allies and of course, their own population. In other words, we spy on everyone. No one is exempt. Like a bottom feeding algae eater, they suck up everything in its wake. Email, search histories, cellular data, phone, chat; every conceivable no method of communication in the digital age is untouched and they store it. It doesn’t target anyone; it targets everyone. It does discern whether the subjects are Johnnie Rotton or if they a Dudley Do-Righteous kind of guys, no on is left unscathed. It seems that in the age of the "war on terror", we now are all enemies of the state.
Rather than asking the tough questions, provokimg an honest exchange of ideas, the media has chosen to report on inanity; what Ed Snowden posted on Facebook in 2009, what his girlfriend looks like, the intention to gather data to reveal to the public before his hire by Booz Allen Hamilton, his high school drop out status, how much money he made, all noise and distraction to keep us from thinking about the stark realization, our government spies on us. One of the most ridiculous items reported involved Snowden’s alleged ex-girlfriend’s boyfriend testosterone driven equivalent to “my dick is bigger than yours” exchange, obliterating the underhanded douchebaggery the US government has perpetuated upon its citizens. I believe Snowden’s greatest fear is being realized. The status quo will remain unchanged, without thought, without any real discussion, demonstrating the true representation of America’s apathy.
In the age of the 24/7 newsertainment, everything is being discussed except the one discussion we desperately need to engage in. Not only has the mainstream media shown its willingness to throw Ed Snowden to the wolves, but also have no problem doing the same with credibility, truth and standards of their own profession. David Gregory, who considers himself a member of the journalistic profession suggested Greenwald be charged and tried for reporting the NSA scandal and claiming that it is a valid point of discussion it has been raised by “others”. The “others” consist of people like Peter King, an extremist Islamophobe. It seems that the inmates are running the asylum. Mr. Gregory was willing to subvert the 1st Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, the very amendment that grants journalists their sacred protection to distract the public. What better way to To give legitimacy to its subversion through this line of questioning and commentary demonstrates how far we have fallen. My grievance is not a response to the demonization of Snowden and Greenwald. They have demonstrated they can take care of and defend themselves. My bone of contention is the lack of the discussion we are desperately in need of. The elephant in the room, the “what America do we want to live in” discussion is not only missing, but has been hijacked by those very individuals; the journalists of the mainstream media, who describe themselves as truth seekers.
We cast our vote for public officials based on shared ideals and common beliefs. In turn give them proxy to represent the interests of the majority. In a democratically governed state, the beliefs and interests of the majority are represented via their elected officials. Barack Obama ran a campaign based on hope and change. He specifically called for an end to the subversion of civil liberties and constitutional rights of the American people, including what we consider a violation of privacy, spying. As the majority of the American voting population elected Mr. Obama based on common shared beliefs, it stands to reason the majority supported Mr. Obama’s promises touting hope and change. One of the primary tenets of hope and change supported the belief that a flourishing democracy’s cannot co-exist with a surveillance state. Clearly the majority does not support a surveillance state.
It has become abundantly clear that while we listen to the noise provided by the media, politicians, units and talking head, they fear nothing from us. They, the government, has demonstrated such arrogance to the people. We have been told Snowden's disclosures are nothing new, it is common knowledge, it is an effective tool against terrorism. We told that Congress was fully apprised, contrary to what representatives claim. We are told by the President that he looks forward to a discussion on this. If this is true, if the programs in question do not violate the civil liberties or constitutional rights of the American citizens, why is this administration so afraid?
I firmly believe this is our last chance to save any vestiges of democracy. If we remain apathetic to the encroachment of the civil liberties and constitutional rights, we will not find our way back. When crossing the Rubicon, Casear famously declared, "alea iacta est", the die is cast. Is this what we want for America? If we allow this gross violation of the 4th amendment continue on, allow this and future governments to distract us with noise, prevent us from having a real, honest conversation about what we allow what our government to do in our name, I fear we have crossed the Rubicon.