Once upon a time in the United States of America, the citizens hoped for a free nation with a Constitution that protected them from tyrannical rule. In the many years since ratification, the protections of the Constitution have slowly become chipped away by the very government it sought to restrain. Judges rule in blatant opposition to clear text and operate purely on hubris, legislators give power away to the executive who rules far beyond the limitations of office.
It’s a bad place we’re in.
The horrific attack of September 11th, 2001 brought things to a new level. Instead of seeking to protect the country, the Bush Administration used it as an opportunity to boost the neoconservative agenda. War became a constant over the next several years, all of it undeclared and thus in direct violation of the Constitution.
Soldiers died for foreign political goals, not freedom.
The blatant disrespect of the United States military by the government is appalling. No matter how many photo ops former President George W. Bush took with soldiers or veterans, it still doesn’t eliminate the fact he put them in harms way when it was not necessary. The security or freedom was not in any direct danger.
We originally sought to avenge the fallen on 9/11, but remained to rebuild bridges and buildings we destroyed. Revenge became occupation.
But it was all for freedom, right?
At home, the nightmare was just beginning. Out of fear, the USA PATRIOT Act was rushed through Congress and a new era in American history officially started. Over the coming years, the National Security Agency boosted it’s own surveillance program and started illegally intercepting the data and communications of innocent Americans. Companies were secretly forced to violate customer privacy while being silenced and unable to speak up about the process.
All in the name of security. But how has security worked?
After more than a decade of big government, terrorism has actually gotten worse. The destabilization of Iraq led to the rise of ISIS. No amount of massive data mining and intercepting of communication could stop homosexuals from being thrown from rooftops or Christians being beheaded. Wiretapping or the USA PATRIOT Act hasn’t kept us safe from shootings in California or Florida by radicalized individuals.
If we’re not sacrificing freedom for security, what are sacrificing it for?
This question works in two ways. What are we sacrificing freedom for, if not for security? Also, what are our soldiers dying for, if it’s not for freedom? The United States military, like the American people, is being used by a government that plays on their fears to push authoritarian agendas. Politicians take advantage of those scared of terrorists who are starting to hit a little close to home.
But instead of securing the border and encouraging self-defense, the government is actually favoring the helplessness of innocent, law-abiding Americans everywhere. Instead of showing respect for our military, the government is lying to them about the goals of various conflicts and sending them off to die for political agendas.
Is this any way to treat the brave men and women who sign their lives up to fight for our nation? The answer is simply “No.”