Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Civil Liberties: Another Victim in this War on Terror

Civil Liberties: Another Victim in this War on Terror

It's not an exaggeration to say we as a country have changed after 9/11. One of the mainstays, however, is that we are still immersed in a plethora of tabloid sensation while Osama bin Laden has yet to be caught. Yes, the terrorists, namely al Qeada, brought war to the United States and the Taliban finally got the attention they'd been seeking. They did major damage to us, but by the afternoon of September 11, 2001, Americans began to rally. We offered encouragement to those rushing to dig through the rubble while refusing to let what happen define us. Hope existed. After all, our country stood for liberty and nothing was going to change that. Or so most thought.

Enter President Bush and his sidekick Dick.

For this administration, those planes were loaded with poisonous fumes of fear, making it possible to bring us back to the McCarthy era. 9/11 has been the springboard Bush has repeatedly used to give him the self-ordained rights to break the law time and time again in order to bring what he considers justice not only to the country he ostensibly serves, but to the world. Now, he's done it again, by signing a bill into law that gives the government even more authority to eavesdrop on whomever they please.

There will be those who will feel the president's actions are justified in light of the ubiquitous albeit indeterminate terrorist cells. (Of course they exist, but we must remember that many of the terrorists who are now cropping up didn't exist on 9/11.) Yet, we must wonder if the price we continue to pay in a futile attempt to quell the radicals is acceptable.

While Bush is keeping America's focus seemingly on "them," we're losing our freedoms in the process. This administration is not responding solely to what happened on our soil; after all, they were already finding ways to tweak the constitution with us unaware prior to that defining day in America, but bin Laden made it all that much easier for them. You remember Osama bin Laden, he was the one Bush promised we'd capture "Dead or Alive," until he focused his attention toward the land that had more financial gain. And then his mission was proudly accomplished once Saddam was captured. (Why then are we still in Iraq, if that is the case?) More accurately, why did we abandon our mission in Afghanistan when the work was clearly not completed?

Only hours after those planes were commandeered and flown into the twin towers, and rammed into that field in Pennsylvania and the Pentagon, we as a country pulled together in our stunned grief. Some even cheered President Bush when he blared his message from the bullhorn as he stood atop the crumbled tragedy because we needed a leader to respond accordingly. Yet, since then, something has gone terribly wrong and in spite of the president's supposed war on terror, it's gaining a foothold while our civil liberties have become one of the many victims.