…..The consensus among the majority of republican and democrat candidates is that maintaining the status quo is the only way forward in the war on terror. Contrary to what Speaker Gingrich argues is a separation between criminal law and war powers, what we have seen over the last decade is an ambiguous merging of the two, where unlawful acts that should fall under the jurisdiction of criminal law are being increasingly categorized as acts of terror.
The Patriot Act has certainly expanded the powers of police surveillance and enabled militarization and weaponization of domestic law enforcement agencies in the name of fighting terror. While there undoubtedly exists a threat against the American people, is further expansion of the Patriot Act necessary, and more importantly, is it justifiable to sacrifice even a few liberties (such as those that give us the right bear arms or be secure in our homes and persons) for the purported security and safety it would provide?
This is as important a debate as any and one that will have far reaching consequences for the future of the United States…..
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