Assemblyman’s bill addresses NSA surveillance

July 2, 2013

By Katy Grimes

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Life in America would be far different if at the end of every day you had to report in to a federal government agency where you had been, who you met with and talked to, who you called and who called you, who you emailed, and what websites you visited.

A chill would take over the land of the free.

In an interview, Assemblyman Travis Allen, R-Huntington Beach, said the surveillance the National Security Agency has been conducting on all Americans for the past decade is not much different. And, Allen said, it’s a violation of American’s rights, and needs to stop.

To begin a conversation among Legislatures across the country, Allen introduced Assembly Joint Resolution 26, calling upon the President and Congress of the United States to make the protection of civil liberties and national security equal priorities, and to immediately discontinue any practices that are contrary to the 4th Amendment of the United States Constitution. Allen’s resolution is the first of its kind in the nation.

“Our country was founded on the principles of protecting individual liberties and the inalienable rights of the people from the infringement of overreaching governments,” Allen said.

“There cannot be a compromise between national security and honoring our commitment to  American citizens through the Constitution. Both are equally important and neither should take precedent over the other,” said Allen. “Government should be transparent, strive for the highest level of integrity, and be held accountable to the public.”

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The recent reports of the National Security Agency collecting and storing Internet, phone and financial data of American citizens, under the auspices of an alleged attempt to stop terrorist activity, is overreach Allen said.

“This revelation that the NSA has been collecting these records from unaware American citizens has raised questions amongst the public about the constitutionality of the government’s actions,” Allen said. “I think Americans would be okay with any legal surveillance plan with a high degree of transparency.”

AJR 26 includes a quote from James Madison, the fourth President of the United States, “Father of the Constitution” for being instrumental in the drafting of the United States Constitution and as the key champion and author of the Bill of Rights: “Since the general civilization of mankind, I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.”

AJR 26 appeals to the federal government to equally prioritize the need for national security against terrorist threats, along with the civil liberties and protection of every American citizen’s Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches. AJR 26 also acknowledges with the high level of technology available today, the personal information of the citizenry can be easily obtained and cataloged, which is why it is incumbent upon all individuals to be vigilant in securing our civil liberties.

Allen added, “Our government should always work to protect Americans from threats to national security, but we must not cast aside our Constitution in the process.”

5 comments

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  1. Hondo
    Hondo 2 July, 2013, 09:21

    And here I thought I was just paranoid.
    All the dems were spitting foam when Bush was president because of the Patriot act. Now, all those same dems, who were on the record opposing the patriot act, are now supporting Obama’s patriot act which is far more intrusive than what Bush was doing.
    All those cameras at the stop lights are not only recording you, but the tapes are feed into a gigantic mainframe that keeps all info for all time.
    The NSA is looking to record everything every person on the planet earth is doing. Everything you buy, every keystroke, every website, every car ride. Even your new dishwashers and microwaves have chips in them that can be hacked by the guv. You put just one dish in the washer and are wasting water, Holder will indict you.
    The possiblities for blackmail are off the scale. Just look at the IRS. It became a part of Obama’s reelection campaign. It still is.
    Every one of my liberal friends here know everything I have written above is true, and everyone of you were spitting foam when Bush was doing the same thing.
    Remember. If you are feeling lonely, the NSA is right there with you. Every second of your life.
    Hondo……

    Reply this comment
  2. us citizen
    us citizen 2 July, 2013, 12:42

    You got that right Hondo. Smart chips are everywhere…….smart meters are too. They make them out that they are helping you, when in reality they are tracking you and will eventually end up costing you more money. The coming of the computer is to blame for everything. Yeah we all love them, but they have taken over our lives and are holding us hostage. How many go bonkers without their fancy phones, their computer banking, their GPS’s………etc. Kids cant even read a clock anymore unless it is digital. What a sad state we are in. I’m actually glad I will not be around when this whole thing implodes…although it looks like its going to happen a lot sooner than I thought……..so maybe I will…….but I’m not going without kicking and screaming.

    Reply this comment
  3. Queeg
    Queeg 2 July, 2013, 19:58

    What loons….live….love your cat, ex mother-in-laws….hug your truck stop boss….your chump change for NSA.

    Reply this comment
  4. Donkey
    Donkey 4 July, 2013, 05:35

    What we are going to find is that “the Obama” used the information from NSA spying to help in his re-election. Think about how much of an advantage a candidate would have with their ear on the actual pulse of the everyday citizen. 🙂

    Reply this comment
  5. SeeSaw
    SeeSaw 5 July, 2013, 11:42

    All the candidates have the same technological information available to them, Donkey. I’m certainly glad that was in place when Romney talked about the 47%. I’m confident that the right candidate won.

    They are interested in who we are calling outside the US and who is calling us. If I had such conversations, they are welcome to listen. They are collecting phone numbers, not listening to conversations unless they see a pattern that needs to be checked out. If they are over-protecting us, so be it. What would you choose–over-protection or no protection? I know what I prefer.

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