Do you think I’m exaggerating or engaging in excessive hyperbole with respect to this topic? Well, keep reading and then see what you think.
I’ve written about the US government’s planned Patriot II legislation, and despite weak denials from government officials, it’s apparent that they are just waiting for the right time to try and get this “update” hustled through congress.
The Village Voice has an insightful article that outlines a variety of constitutional protections that would be greatly weakened (if not removed outright!) if this bill passes. Some of these include: the ability for the government to strip one’s citizenship, the ability to arrest someone and not disclose that fact — nor where they are being held (why does that remind me of communist Russia and East Germany?), along with a host of other such assaults against the constitution. The article also has a couple of good links to sites that provide a more detailed review of the consequences of this proposed legislation.
Warning against a repeat of history, the article concludes with this cautionary note, reminding folks of how Patriot I got passed, with virtually no review, during the immediate aftermath of 9/11:
Ashcroft deflected angry Senate queries on Patriot Act II, saying “it would be the height of absurdity” to imagine the administration’s hustling through a law without congressional review. Yet on October 25, 2001, 98 out of 99 voting senators hurriedly passed the 342-page Patriot Act I