The horrific after math of the tragedy event of 9-11 still impacts the United States government and the life of the citizens living in the United States today. There are still many concerns and question about what can the United States do to help prevent a terror event from taking place again. The United States has made some massive changes in it’s security since 9-11. However, even with all the new laws and regulations some believe that there is still a need for more laws. More laws and regulations that would allow law enforcement and the government to maintain or increase the liberties they have enjoyed prior to 9-11.
Today the Unites States has made an enormous improvement in technology to make it safer. With all the new technology improvements since 9-11 the United States is safer, but not as safe as it could be. Citizens living in this county know that in order to make more improvement in our homeland security, counterterrorism, or any other aspect it will require new technology. But new technology doesn’t come cheap; there is a price to pay that isn’t of monetary value, less privacy for citizens. Is the invasion of some of your privacy worth giving up for protection? What can be more important than the safety of your life?
One of the marvelous improvements of technology that took place preceding the event of 9-11 was airport security. These improvements were made for the better and have yield good result. With this being said, there is still controversy surrounding the changes made, like the invasion of privacy. Transportation Security Administration performs frisk and pat downs at airports, which do not violate an individual’s constitutional rights, but, there is controversy about how far Transportation Security Administration should be able to go. Today people are told to do things like take their shoes off at airports, (add another thing security does and then put a comma with etc. after it to end the sentence) These still do not violate your constitutional rights. Would you rather have someone take off their shoes or bring a bomb or weapon onto a plane?
Airport security raises a lot of concern about, “how far is too far.” There was an incident with a 90 year old lady at an airport that was ask to take off her diaper. The reason that she was asked was because it was wet and it prevented her from being search properly. Once again the thing that we are overlooking is that the matter of safety overrides everything else. Or what about in 2009, when Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was found with plastic explosives hidden in his underwear at an airport. Without the new searches and frisk and pad down procedures, the plastic bomb would have been overlooked. It’s obvious that new enforcement of laws have slowed down some of the terrorism acts but there is still much more that still needs to be done. These are just some of the reasons why our government has invested 100s of millions of dollars to speed up technology machines and equipment.
One of the types of data that the government gathers about citizens are cell phone records. The National Security Agency collected the phone records of millions of Verizon customers. They ordered that, “Verizon must provide the phone numbers of both parties on a call, location data, unique identifiers and the time and duration of calls. This applies to calls both within the United States and placed to an international number,” (Welsh, 2013). This is still not an invasion of privacy or constitutional rights. Let’s take some time out to think here, what could our government be doing with this information? If anything, it’s something positive; why won’t the citizens of this country trust their government? The collection of phone numbers is for our safety. We as people should have a right to know if our neighbor is plotting a terrorist attack. If you have nothing to hide, then why would you mind giving up that information to the government? What harm could come from phone records. The United States government is something that every citizen in this country should put his or her trust into. With the trust and support of the people we as a whole could worry less about things like bomb threats at races, shootings in school, or shootings at movie theaters.
Another type of data that is collected by our government is the gathering of online data of person’s computers records. “The Internet Surveillance Program collects data from online providers including e-mail, chat services, videos, photos, stored data, file transfers, video conferencing and log-ins,” (Savage, 2013). Even with our government monitoring these events, which take place every day in every person’s life living in America, it still remains an issue of violating privacy. Once again its comes down to that phase if you have nothing to hide let us in….if you’re a good American. I’m pretty sure the government is not listening or concerned about the foolish meaningless stuff. They can less about who individuals are dating or hanging out with. The Internet Surveillance Program was establishes to catch bad guys and prevent faulty events from taking place. The information like emails, chat service, photos, etc. is private information and should remain confidential. Which the information will, our government is not going to expose this information to the public unless there is some type of suspicion or probable cause. But, even before the situation escalates to that point there would probably be an intensive investigation.
We have either seen on the news or read somewhere in a paper about the Federal Bureau Investigation, National Security Agency, or one of the many other organizations being abusive to citizens. We are human, sometimes we are going to make mistakes, but nobody wants to be accused of a crime. When the government holds someone in custody then later finds out that they are innocent, the government should find some way to compensate them for their cooperation and our mistake of false accusations. I believe that we have not left the door open to wide, in my opinion, we should welcome the government into our homes. We should show our government that we are law abiding citizens and that we appreciate what they do to help maintain peace, allowing everyone to feel safer. As far as our liberty goes, we must allow some of it to erode in order to live a safer life. Our founding fathers wrote our rights, such as liberty, many years ago. But since those times, look at how things have evolved over the past years, such as social media, cell phones, Facebook, etc. So we must also allow our laws to evolve in order to prevent conflicts, such as 9-11.
When the next big incident occurs the point of views made in this argument are some issues that will once again be evaluated. Who knows when our government will take action and do what is needed in order to maintain safety and peace. As a citizen of the United States, I am willing to give up some of my individual rights to ensure that tragic events such as 9-11 do not occur again. The top priority should be the protection and safety of every individual living in the Unites States.
Courtney from Study Moose
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