In George Orwell’s novel 1984, the society was brainwashed and controlled by their government. They were stripped of their rights by “Big Brother”. The government says they’re at war, but the citizens never hear of the enemy battles or see them on television. The government makes them watch certain programs, and always has them under surveillance. It is as if the people of this generation cannot do anything without the government having planned it already or them watching what the citizens are doing. The government invades the privacy of the people.
Our government recently used the Patriot Act as a way to invade the privacy of many people. The USA PATRIOT Act is a law ratified by the government under George W Bush on October 26th 2001. This law stood for Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism. It was put into effect after the terrorist attack of 9/11. At first many supported this act and what it stood for. When voted upon very few people were against it. Both houses of congress and both political parties fully supported the Patriot Act.
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After the trauma of September 11th people were willing to give up their civil liberties Many including our government believe that this act was put into effect to protect us from terrorism, but in fact this act invaded the privacy of many innocent people. The act gives the government the ability to search telephone calls, emails, financial matters especially one involving foreign individuals, and even medical records for people who are “suspected” of endangering the country. With the act in effect the government is able to detain and deport immigrants suspected of being involved with terrorism.
Many immigrants were stereotyped as suspects and treated differently by our government under this act. When looking at the act, there are many similarities to the policies that “Big Brother” encouraged in Orwell’s novel. The act consists of information sharing, tapping phones and computers, and access to personal records. Information sharing allows criminal probes information to be shared with the government. Tapping a phone and computer allows the government to hear and see our conversations from where ever they please. Finally the access to personal records gives the government access to our financial, business, and personal information.
These three holes in the system give the government too much power. If they have undisputable evidence showing that they know someone is doing something wrong than they have the right to do so. While sharing someone’s information you could endanger the risk of an innocent man or woman’s reputation. You could even accidentally put someone into a police investigation. When the government uses “bugs” to tap someone’s phone or computer, they can commit privacy violations with anyone that is really not involved with the case they are investigating.
Their access to our records is another thing that should not be taken lightly. They are supposed to use it for terrorist attack threats only, yet they can use their power to get any persons record they want. The worst part is they would never have to show probable cause to a judge. How can the government get away with all this? We let them. We got so scared after the terrorist attack on the twin towers that we blindly gave away our civil rights. There is no question that the Patriot Act was unconstitutional.
Similar to “Big Brother” in 1984, it was designed to give the government virtually the ultimate power over the population. The Government should in fact be allowed to protect the population from a threatened terrorist attack. However, there is a big difference between protecting your people from terrorism and protecting the rights of your people. Some people may say, “Oh well, I have nothing to hide. ” When in reality, no one person has the perfect life. This act takes away your comfort from even expressing true feelings over the phone to a loved one.
They will feel as if they don’t actually have the “freedom” of speech and thinking. Secondly, by corrupting our own nation, we are in a way, helping the terrorists. We are taking our focus off them and fighting with each other. It is a self corruption. We as a nation blame our government for being to nosy and digging into files and information that they have no needs to do so. The government, wants us to think they are the nice guys when really we can not believe a word they say because innocent people everyday get hurt for something they were not involved in.