As those of who consider ourselves the last bastion of freedom by arguing across the nation that we should be free to make the individual choice as to whether or not to wear a motorcycle helmet something interesting happened this week end.
Congress in fear of having President Dub'ya interrupt their vacations once again sold "US"
out and in the process throughouly did away with the fourth and fifth amendments of the constitution.
Amendment 4: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Amendment 5: No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Operative words in these two amendments, or should I say the most operative as all these words were written with such specific and deliberate meaning that no "man", "men", or "arm of the government" should be able to prostitute the document by which our FREEDOMS are guaranteed, however "probable cause" (4th) and "due process of law" (5th) are cornerstones which the current administration, under the perpetration of fear of terrorist attack, has just taken a "jack hammer" to.
Yesterday President Bush signed into law an expansion of the governments powers to "spy" on it's on citizens to such an extent that even the secret courts under FISA (Foriegn Intelligence Surveillance Act) are no longer needed because the judgment and trustworthiness of one man the U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez is good enough. After all the "prez" trusts him.
The new law passed by congress caving into presidential blackmail compels phone and internet company's to provide back doors for eavesdroppers and allows for warrantless wiretaps. And how will we know that this power will not be abused. The very man congress has found contemptible in his lack of candor during hearings. Robert Gonzales.
All so easily done by relying on the fears, apathy and the American Public. Knowing that our need for comfort and security far outweighs our desire for freedom. And God forbid we ever be attacked by terrorists again (and we will, no matter the law. It is just a question of when. If not from with out then form with in remember OKLAHOMA?) some congressman would have to say he did not vote for a "restriction of freedoms" that "may (or may not) have prevented such an attack.
You see (please see it) if they can do this out of fear of "foreigners" what will we allow them to do out of fear of our own "Tim McVeighs"?
KEEP THESE WORDS IN MIND:
In 1928, Justice Louis Brandeis wrote that the real threat to American freedom was not from an outside assault, but from the devious manipulations of our own misguided leaders. "The greatest dangers to liberty," he observed, "lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning, but without understanding."
And for those of us who consider ourselves "Freedom Fighters" best 1. Get a grip on what "freedom" really is, and 2. Start "really" fighting. Ride Free, Live Free, Die Free........rc