There comes a point when a person must ask how many freedoms are the American people willing to give up in the name of safety and security? What will be the tipping point where they stand up and say no more? The U.S. Government uses the reasoning that the effort is all in order to fight terrorists and keep our nation safe, but is this true or do they just want more control?
Many Americans would much rather stick their head in the sand and allow the government to do anything it wants as long as it might make the country “safer” and well defended against foreign threats. They are fine with the knowledge that a camera now peeks at them from most street corners, that their internet activity is logged, and phone conversations monitored. To these individuals as long as those efforts stop one attack on America then the government is justified in taking such actions.
These Americans sleep much better at night knowing there is someone watching over them, keeping them safe from terrorists and others who wish harm on the United States. They believe that those who take issue with being monitored in such ways must “have something to hide,” and cannot understand why others get more upset with each right that is violated.
On the other hand you have just as many Americans who refuse to silently give up right after right, freedom after freedom for safety’s sake. They realize that in doing so the terrorists in theory have won. The one thing most can agree upon is that the Islamic extremists, who wish to terrorize the United States, hate America due to its freedoms. By taking those very freedoms away one by one you are slowly destroying the foundation the nation was built upon. This is exactly what the terrorists want.
The United States will never truly be safe from terrorism in any case. No matter how many policies it changes, no matter how it restricts its citizens, the terrorists will adapt. If a passenger can no longer carry a lighter onto a plane, a terrorist will change the plan to use a safety match. If the safety match is no longer allowed then they will use a chemical reaction to start a fire. There is truly no way to stop a person who is absolutely determined to cause harm.
Is the fact that there have not been any successful attacks on American soil since the events of 9/11/01 prove that citizens relinquishing these rights are keeping the nation safe? Or is it just that the nation has been lucky in stopping the attempts since then? If it foregoing certain rights and privacies keep the citizens safe, will they continue to let the government strip more and more of those freedoms until the United States is no longer a free nation? Will the citizens allow the American government to start dictating everyday life to them in the name of “safety” or even things such as “health”? Has the country already started down that slippery slope with regulations on smoking in public places, sugary drinks in schools, and trans-fats in fast food?