Feb 17 2008

Politics: Should telecommunications companies receive immunity for their participation in government surveillance programs?

Published by at 4:00 pm under Politics

Should telecommunications companies receive immunity for their participation in government surveillance programs?

We live in interesting times. We have the ability to monitor almost any traffic in an effort to try and prevent almost any form of terrorist attack. We could line our streets with cameras and pay citizens to watch for any sign of trouble and report it to the proper authorities. If we wanted to, we could execute anyone caught contributing to terrorism in any way. Surely that would stop it, right? Surely we would justify such actions by weighing the cost in human life of executing criminals versus the countless innocent lives lost in countless acts of terrorism. Sounds plausible to me.

The only problem with such a notion is that it violates the principles of freedom upon which this country was founded. Believe me, I really hate to use the “our fathers” argument. It’s really the only thing that seems to pack a punch, though. Our forefathers (and mothers) believed in us, but more than that, they believed in freedom. They knew that freedom isn’t free. They knew that it must be fought for, and at times requires the loss of life. Sometimes I think that there are few things we today would risk our lives for, but they did it without thinking twice because they believed in freedom.

I’m less concerned about the telecom companies having immunity for it than I am with the government itself having immunity. Who holds the watcher’s watchers responsible for their actions? Whether we live in a free society or a police state, the cost of freedom is still the occasional loss of life. Either abide by the law or change it by legal means. Don’t give retroactive immunity because it creates divisiveness and encourages anarchy.

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Politics: Should telecommunications companies receive immunity for their participation in government surveillance programs?”

  1. Kenny Holmeson 28 Feb 2008 at 5:25 am

    Adam, you bring many good points to the table on this matter… I think you are onto something!

  2. Gibuon 18 Apr 2008 at 8:07 pm

    I say we blame the FCC and take censorship out of the picture alltogether!!! but what you say about surv…..serv……watching me while I am doin stuff, thats bad, and wrong, blame the company heads only not the employeees cause they are like the ones just doin the jobs

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