Since September 11, the government has captured a large number of terrorists who were planning attacks on American soil, such as Jose Padilla and the renegades planning to bomb American bridges near the 10th anniversary of September 11. The government does not have the right to arbitrarily arrest people without cause, but it should have the right to observe people it believes may deem a threat and take action if the individuals commit an act that makes the government believe they will attack civilians.
The monitoring of suspicious individuals has provided our government with valuable intelligent information. It has also likely helped to divert some terrorist attacks on our shores and overseas. I think that strict guidelines should be put in place as to who can be monitored and under what circumstances. But, if an individual meets those guidelines, then monitoring them may prove to serve the greater good.
The government should be able to secretly monitor individuals that they deem suspicious, but there must be clear parameters on what "suspicious" means and how the government must verify and certify that the individual is indeed suspicious. This is the way the government has been able to shut down organized crime, in particular, and to try to prevent terrorist actions in recent years. However, this is still the United States, and this is still a free land. Any infringement on inalienable rights needs to be clearly justified by an independent party. If the government has determined that someone needs to be monitored, the government's case should be reviewed by an independent and uninterested court or committee in an expedited manner, before they can move forward with their monitoring.
Governments must be able to monitor suspicious individuals in order to effectively protect citizens against terror attacks. Homeland Security must have the ability to monitor suspicious individuals in order to react in a proactive manner to threats of terror against United States citizens. Without the ability to monitor suspicious individuals, the government is unable to protect the citizens effectively.
With all of the extremists in our society, we need to be proactive in avoiding disasters, versus waiting for an act to be committed, and then punishing for it. If we can stop the act before it is committed, we can use the same manpower for monitoring, versus punishment, and have a safer society to live in.
The government should be able to secretly monitor suspicious individuals, but in a legal way. That is, with a court order. If the authorities suspect that an individual is engaged in illegal activity, there is no reason to announce their surveillance either. Announcing their intention will cause the suspect to alter their behavior, and render surveillance useless.
People don't act suspicious for no reason. If a person is partaking in suspicious activities, then they likely are hiding something. It just seems that it's in our best interests to have suspicious people monitored. If a few people have to have their privacy invaded to keep the rest of the people safe, so be it.
Monitoring suspicious individuals has resulted in averting many attacks on America, as well as other parts of the world. It has also helped in fighting the drug trade, the sex trade, and many other illegal activities. If you are not doing anything illegal then you shouldn't be affected by these actions.
People are so gung-ho about the Constitution. It is a great document, but it is pushed so far. When people can get away with murder because of a piece of paper, it's gone too far. I believe the right of privacy does not apply here. If the person is suspected of harming others, then it is the right of the government to monitor them.. for the greater good.
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Who is to define suspicious? Haven't you been to a website that could deem you as 'suspicious?' Furthermore, considering the government has already been biased against republicans in the IRS, who's to say your other political actions don't warrant 'suspicion', and therefore, with a little string pulling, search and seizure?
Its evident quite often of commoners using suspicious language like phrases - "im gonna kill u" , etc... This will indeed create a huge bulk of suspicion on many parties and the govt. Will not be able to concentrate on a mail which really is suspicious. Moreover a terrorist is very much aware of threats that are in cyber and physical world therefore he will not create that suspicion in his mails.
So the govt. Will end up catching innocent people and terrorism will carry on. What a blunder....
If a crime has been committed and you are a suspect, I think personally that the government should definitely be able to search your phone's software for any suspicious acts and only listen to recent calls up until the date of the crime was committed. I also say the same goes for text messages. This should only be legal in this case and this case only.
If you send a text or an email saying you don't like what some part of the government is doing, or that you have some political differences to the government, the government should not be able to see the message and categorise you as a suspicious individual or put you under surveillance, that could cause you a lot of trouble in the future. It's not just terrorists that get caught up in this...
Anyone in the Government could just say that someone is suspicious and use that as an excuse to spy on people. This is also depends on how one defines someone else as being suspicious. In the United States, you are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty. They are ignoring this and doing whatever they want and giving us excuses as to why.
Although the use of monitoring has been a beneficial tool to keeping this land we call "America" safe from "terrorist", however there is another component that is missing from this conversation. Who is deemed a suspicious individual by whose definition? This is a blatant act by the government to profile people of who are different from the norm. It is a tactic to target innocent people based on the color of their skin or their genetically generated features. How is this okay to continue to let injustice reign over a group of people, so you can feel safe? Not only does this give the gov. free reign to target whom ever they want but this will only continue to increase the growing problem of mass incarceration which is approx. 25% of the US population, on the basis of suspicion to protect the American soil. For the " Aye" Sayers, the view that is coming across is that we are targeting one type of people because of Sept. 11. The reality is this will only continue to criminalize innocent people for reasons of suspicion, once again who has defined this and come on people look between the lines with these policies put forth by the government. It could be you one day targeted because of a genetic disposition you have.
How dare the government think they can spy on citizens, i bet they don't get spied on themselves. This is a violation of people's privacy and I'm sure the people who are saying the government should spy on us, are clearly not right in the head. How could you say that you want someone spying on you, wouldn't you feel creeped out at the thought that some one is spying on you? It's just plain stupid, how you could agree with the government spying on you, have you no dignity? You need to sort yourselves out seriously
It deeply saddens me the amount of people who voted yes on this. What the hell is suspicious? I find it suspicious that so many people who live in the "land of the free" are quite happy to throw that freedom in the trash. I find it suspicious that people are willing to trust those who created the beast, to now protect us from it. Without Probable Cause and the necessary Warrants, governments should not be permitted to monitor the activities of any individual, accused of a crime or not.
"You're planning on blowing up the mall," I've just accused you of a crime... Enjoy the government watching you do everything in case you're part of a bigger plot.
See... This is how home robbery and identity thieves start because other people are looking through our own personal stuff. Now other people that we don't even know who or what they are, are looking and knowing what we do, how we do things. What's our business... Is our business, no one else's. What if the stupid government hears a conversation and misunderstood it? Than what's going to happened next? They THINK they know what their doing is right but really it's not. I'm 16 years old and I know this crap, it's F***n' creepy
Where will they draw the line? Just because they are the government, it doesn't give them the rights to spy on us. It's creepy and kind of stalkerish. It's a violation of privacy. "Oh yeah, they're spying on me. That's cool. Would you like to look through my diary while you're at it?".... No, just no.