It is unfair to suspect an entire ethnic group for the unscrupulous actions of a few. Even admitting that a few radical Islamists are plotting terror strikes on the Internet, it is still unfair that all American citizens should sacrifice their cherished rights to privacy and confidentiality. Hence there is a strong case for abandoning the PATRIOT Act and reviving the principles of freedom and fairness upon which the country is founded. Moreover, President Obama should discontinue with the electronic monitoring program in particular and the broader PATRIOT Act in general because the executive powers provided in them are in contradiction to the letter and spirit of the constitution. Further,
“the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 goes far beyond the Antiterrorism Act of 1996, enacted in the wake of the 1995 Oklahoma bombing, which legal critics at that time termed ‘one of the worst assaults on the Constitution in decades.’ Despite the mounting criticism from the American Civil Liberties Union and other pro-liberty lobbies, the federal momentum continues to move away from individual rights, with public discussions of a Terrorism Information and Prevention System (“TIPS”) Program to encourage people to report each other’s suspicious activities to the government, and even use torture to extract useful information from some detainees”. (Abdolian & Takooshian, 2003)
Once President Obama took his oath of office to “preserve, protect and defend the constitution”, he is implicitly obliged to “obey the Constitution and respect the freedoms that the Constitution guarantees to all Americans. Among the provisions of the Constitution that every government official, from the president on down, is bound to obey is the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits the government from conducting ‘unreasonable searches and seizures’ on U.S. Citizens.” (Sanders, 2010) By acting against the constitution, President Obama has betrayed the trust placed on his shoulders by American voters. During the election campaign of 2008, Barack Obama ran on such catch-words as ‘hope’ and ‘change’. Now that the general public has seen the emptiness of those words, they will be cautious next time. Indeed, if he decides to re-run for Presidency two years down the line, he needs to prove that he follows democratic mandates. (Sinnar, 2003)
Tim Jones, April 7th, 2009, In Warrantless Wiretapping Case, Obama DOJ’s New Arguments Are Worse Than Bush’s, retrieved from <http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/04/obama-doj-worse-than-bush>
Frontline (2007-01-09). “Spying on the Home Front” – Interview with Mark Klein”. Public Broadcasting System, retrieved from <http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/homefront/interviews/klein.html> on 2007-08-15.
Abdolian, Lisa Finnegan, and Harold Takooshian. “The USA PATRIOT Act: Civil Liberties, the Media, and Public Opinion.” Fordham Urban Law Journal 30.4 (2003): 1429+.
Nesson, Charles. “Threats to Privacy.” Social Research 68.1 (2001): 105-113. Questia. Web. 24 July 2010.
Schiller, Kurt. “Phishing Scams Edge into Social Networks.” Information Today Nov. 2009: 46.
Skeeter Sanders, April 5, 2010, Why Is Obama Continuing Bush’s Unconstitutional Surveillance?, retrieved from <http://www.nowpublic.com/world/why-obama-continuing-bushs-unconstitutional-surveillance>
Shade, Leslie Regan. “Internet Social Networking in Young Women’s Everyday Lives: Some Insights from Focus Groups 1.” Our Schools, Our Selves Summer 2008: 65+.
Patriotic or Unconstitutional? the Mandatory Detention of Aliens under the USA Patriot Act. Contributors: Shirin Sinnar – author. Journal Title: Stanford Law Review. Volume: 55. Issue: 4. Publication Year: 2003. Page Number: 1419+. COPYRIGHT 2003 Stanford Law School.