Government admits to more spying – this time, on gays

I don’t know about how you all feel, but it seems a bit strange and wrong to me when citizens can no longer organize in order to speak out against government policies with which they do not agree. After all, don’t we all have freedom of speech? Isn’t questioning the government’s actions and challenging your leaders to do better the patriotic thing to do? I was always under the impression that questioning and challenging the government was a good thing, when done tastefully, respectfully and civilly. Isn’t that how our country made its way toward being independent from Britain?

The US Government, especially under the leadership of our current administration, has taken some serious wrong turns in relation to civil liberties and freedom, as well as the over-reach of Presidential power. Some would go as far to say that the President’s aggressive decision-making activities are unconstitutional and abuses of power.

With all of the information floating around regarding secret spying on citizens by the government, I have to wonder how much “spying” really is going on in the government. We’ve got the NSA wire-tapping stuffs, the newly disclosed (thanks to the NY Times) information regarding spying of bank records, the spying of LGBT and allied student groups and God knows what else.

Why aren’t Americans pissed off? Tyrannical governments just don’t spring out of no where… the tyranny usually starts off small and increases only gradually (so it is harder to notice) until the People have no more rights at all.

For more than a year now I’ve taken my more moderate side to combat my liberal Democratic buddies who like to bash Bush and his neo-conservative buddies. My friends say that Bush and his cronies want nothing more than world domination. I’ve always said that wasn’t true… that there are other, more logical reasons for some of the things the Republicans are doing. After all this spying non-sense, I’m not too sure anymore.

Just check out this story….

Via information obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and continuing efforts by the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) to track government spying on LGBT groups, the Military has admitted to spying on LGBT student groups participating in actions protesting the Military’s anti-gay “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

According to an article from News, the new information make sit clear that the Military spied more heavily on these groups than they had previously reported.

The information details how the Military intercepted numerous email messages from and within student organizations doing nothing more than using the Constitutional guaranteed and protected freedom of speech to voice their opposition to a government policy.

The Military spied on groups at the State University of New York at Albany, William Paterson University in New Jersey, Southern Connecticut State University and the University of California at Berkeley.

Some of the groups and demonstrations also included anti-way protests, as well as protests to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

C Dixson Osburn, the executive director of SLDN, said this about the new information:

“Federal government agencies have no business peeping through the keyholes of Americans who choose to exercise their first amendment rights… Americans are guaranteed a fundamental right to free speech and free expression, and our country’s leaders should never be allowed to undermine those freedoms. Surveillance of private citizens must stop. It is the suppression of our constitutional rights, and not the practice of them, that undermines our national security. It is patently absurd that this administration has linked sexual orientation with terrorism.”

Last December the Military had admitted to spying on three LGBT student groups: OUTlaw at New York University law school and groups at the State University of New York at Albany and William Patterson College in New Jersey (see related post, December 2005).

For more: Blog search for “military spying”

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