Saturday, July 31, 2010

Letter to my Senator

Senator Richard Durbin
309 Hart Senate Bldg.
Washington, DC 20510

Senator Durbin,

I am writing to urge you to oppose our President’s proposed change to the law designed to make it easier to obtain internet usage information without a court order.

As I understand it, these additional powers are intended to be used for counterterrorism and are related to the extraordinary authority given to law enforcement by the Patriot Act.  As with the Patriot Act, this is too great a threat to our civil rights to be reasonable.

I do understand the very real threat that terrorism represents.  I applaud the hard work and dedication of our local and national law enforcement agencies as they strive to protect us and our way of life.  But our way of life also includes protection from unreasonable search and precludes such without a court order.  To circumvent those principles in the name of expediency is to change the very nature of our nation.

I would also like to urge you to support genuine internet neutrality.  Just as I think it is in the best interests of my nation to prevent its government from censoring and monitoring the internet, so to do I think that it is in our best interests to prevent companies from doing the same.

Whether telecommunication companies like it or not, the internet has become the wonderful, unruly, stream-of-consciousness of the world.  Though we may pay them for a doorway into this often obnoxious place, the content is ours and how we use it is not something they should be allowed to manipulate with impunity.

Thank you for your time and consideration of these issues.

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