Letter: Guilty of Telling the Truth

To the Editor:

As an American citizen, I am deeply troubled by the severe abuse of power by the federal government. When Edward Snowden brought to light information on the domestic spying programs used by the executive branch, he was called a traitor and was accused of aiding the “enemy.”

These leaks were intended for the American people — does that make us the enemy? Why do I suddenly fear my government more than the terrorists these programs allegedly protect us from?

It’s clear that our representatives have little regard for our constitutional rights. This is an issue that spans party lines, and both Republicans and Democrats are guilty. Collecting information without probable cause or a warrant is a clear violation of our Fourth Amendment rights.

Recently Rep. Ann Kuster, D-N.H., voted against our privacy and constitutional rights when she voted against the Amash amendment. The amendment would have defunded the National Security Agency’s phone metadata program and was narrowly defeated. I would strongly encourage anyone interested in retaining their constitutional rights to research how their representatives voted.

It’s disconcerting that Edward Snowden is being accused of wrongdoing for telling the truth, yet nothing is being done to James Clapper, director of national intelligence, for his false testimony to Congress. No representative can say that there is proper oversight of the NSA when the agency’s director is feeding Congress lies.

It is the patriotic duty of all American citizens to question what is being done in the shadows by the executive branch. The system of checks and balances set in place by our Founding Fathers is clearly being subverted. Contact your representatives and encourage them to support repealing the Patriot Act and FISA Amendments Act. Insist that you will not tolerate infringement of your constitutional rights, and hold your representatives accountable when they vote contrary to the principles you elected them to uphold.

Douglas Plumley