Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Lesson in History: Don't Give Up Freedom Because of Fear

Democrat President FDR ordered all Japanese-Americans to be imprisoned. Without charges, without warrants, they were placed in concentration camps like the one here. Ignoring freedom because of fear!

Canada's recent arrest of 17 citizens and residents allegedly wanting to bomb Canadian buildings has shocked some folks in the intelligence community. This group of alleged Muslim extremists doesn't seem to have a direct connection with any known international terrorist organization. Despite the success of this anti-terrorist operation, there are undoubtedly questions in Washington being asked. Should we fear our own citizens becoming terrorists? If so, how can we prevent that from happening?

The Truth Test of Democracy: Should We Give Up Freedoms In Times of Peril?

In a country where freedom of religion, freedom of privacy, and freedom of speech exists, you will always have the possibility that someone will exchange and believe in the wrong idea. This is the risk of democracy. Thank God that people who want to kill and terrorize are only a minority in our society. Though terrorists account only about 0.00004% of the population in the USA, they are shown about 60% of the time on the news (rough estimates from last night's news broadcasts)!

What this unbalance creates is an environment of fear. Congress has recently passed anti-terror laws and the NSA has admitted to having domestic eavesdropping programs. These laws and programs would have never passed before 9/11. But because 0.00012% of our population died in a single attack, 99.99988% of our population are now subject to new laws and new programs that pushes the limit of restricting our freedoms. The attacks on 9/11 were unfair, uncalled for, and the people involved in them should be brought to justice. However, the anger we have and the fear that we have should not drive us to give up our freedom.

Don't Let Fear Overcome Freedom

As a democratic nation, we have been tested in times of great peril in the past. Some of which we succeeded in protecting our freedoms despite the danger, and some we have failed.

For instance, in the surprise Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Democrat President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the mass expulsion and incarceration of Japanese Americans by signing Executive Order 9066 on February 19th, 1942. U.S.-born citizens were arrested with no charges, and no warrants. Expelled from their jobs, and removed from their communities, they were locked up in camps and treated as if they were criminals just because of their ancestry. On the first set of incarcerations, there were 92,785 Californians arrested because they had Japanese parents or grandparents.

The nation, because of fear, stood silent as the Constitution was ignored, basic human rights violated, and international laws broken. Our founding fathers would have turned over in their graves.

Another example of "fear" that made the nation ignore civil liberties was between 1954-1968 during the civil rights movement. Thousands of black Americans were beaten, killed, and detained by white gangs and law enforcement officers a like. Most of the South feared that black Americans would change the cultural and racial landscape of the USA. Once again, "fear" made us ignore basic constitutional rights of equality. Even church organizations like the Southern Baptists supported segregation against black Americans. In fact, local Southern Baptist church leaders at the time were the leaders of a secret white terrorist organization called the KKK or the Ku Klax Klan. Their mission was to disrupt blacks from exercising their rights to vote and their right to be integrated in schools.


The flavor of "fear" has changed over the years. In the past, it was Japanese, Germans, Russians, black Americans, and now Arab/Muslim communities. What's next? American citizens born from illegal aliens? Our freedoms should always be protected no matter the climate of fear. We as a country are stronger than this. We should not ignore the freedoms and rights of religious liberty, privacy, and speech.

Let's teach ourselves and our children to never ever give up freedom just because of fear.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

hELLO i LIVE IN bRITISH Columbia Canada, I feel my human right are being taken from me. I live on native land.I rent every month alot for my mobile home.I would like to bring to light about the the Kennawick man , that they found in Washington state a few years ago. They say that the bones are older then any native bones found, the bones were of a white man in his 30s or 40s. The goverments of Canada and USA, do not want the people to now, because if they knew, all the land claims the natives are makeing would be worth nothing, because they were not the first peoples in this country I feel you should Know,because the natives want the US to return the bones, why should they get the bones, they are not native bones. Plese find out for your self , There are books on it