I was worried for a second. See, I am a dyed-in-the-wool conservative, but recently I found myself agreeing with a self-identified socialist from Vermont (Sen. Bernie Sanders) and angrily disagreeing with a so-called “conservative” from New York (Rep. Peter King).
Now before you begin to doubt my conservative credibility… Ted Cruz was in complete agreement with me.
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) January 3, 2014
I hate socialism. I think it’s the first step to democratic despotism. However, on the question of the NSA, the socialist (Sanders) is correct and the RINO (King) is horribly wrong.
For Peter King, the most important thing is defending our nation from another terrorist attack. It’s also defeating Islamic terrorist organizations and the corrupt fanatics who fund them. On their face, these are not bad goals. The question becomes what sacrifices are we willing to make to accomplish these goals? For Rep. Peter King, it seems like there is no compromise he wouldn’t be willing to make in the fight against terrorism, even if it means ignoring our guaranteed Constitutional rights.
Appearing on Fox News Channel on Sunday, Rep.Peter King (R-NY) dismissed members of Congress calling for the National Security Agency to reform its information gathering practices. He insisted that even members of Congress should be monitored by the NSA, just like every other American, in case they are “talking to an Al Qaeda leader in Iraq or Afghanistan.”
He even takes it farther and says horrible things like this…
“People like Rand Paul are putting American lives at risk. If we listen to Rand Paul and follow his policies, Americans could die,” King said later in that segment. Citing the foiled New York City subway attack, King said that “If Rand Paul had been around and we had listened to him, hundreds of New Yorkers would be dead today. That would be on his conscience. Or maybe it wouldn’t be. Maybe it wouldn’t bother him, I don’t know.”
Because caring about the right to privacy and the Fourth Amendment means that you want people to die. What a monstrous thing to say, Congressman. I’m not the only one who thinks so; Fox News pundit Eric Bolling took to Facebook to express his displeasure with King.
For its part, the NSA is in full agreement with Rep. King (of course) and had this to say in response to Senator Sanders’ concerns about the privacy of Congress.
“NSA’s authorities to collect signals intelligence data include procedures that protect the privacy of U.S. persons. Such protections are built into and cut across the entire process. Members of Congress have the same privacy protections as all U.S. persons,” said the agency in a statement obtained by CNN.
There is a reason that conservatives and liberals are coming together against the mushy middle on the issue of NSA spying. Conservatives hold the Constitution and the liberty it protects sacred and abhor any government attack on the rights guaranteed therein. Liberals value civil liberties. An individual’s right to privacy happens to fit neatly into both columns.
However, those folks in the mushy middle – mainstream Democrats and RINO’s (Republicans-in-name-only) don’t happen to really care about anything. That’s the secret to their compromise. All they care about is power and keeping their cushy jobs. Other than those two things, they don’t really have any core values, so any wind of change can shift their political ideals. And Islamic terrorism is a strong wind of change.
I can appreciate Rep. King’s desire to keep Americans safe, but I cannot stomach his willingness to do so at any cost. We will not compromise our Fourth Amendment right to keep the government (and its police forces) out of our private lives. It’s time to remind Representative King and all his cohorts in the Democrat and Republican Party that our liberty is not up for debate.
Fight terrorism without compromising our freedom… otherwise what’s the point?
Who cares if we defeat Islamic terrorism if we have to give up our liberty to do it? At the end of the day, is that sacrifice worthwhile? Not to me.
“They who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” — Benjamin Franklin 1755
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com