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The attacks at the World Trade Center 12 years ago were a tragedy. The attack on the embassy in Benghazi was a tragedy. Every act of blatant terror is a tragedy. But with every tragedy, we have slowly given up more and more of what makes this country great.
The purpose of the National Security Agency is to identify potential threats to the country by examining telecommunications. With the revelations in recent days, it is clear the government believes we are all potential threats. That is the mark of hysteria, akin to the Red Scare of the 1940s and 1950s. Communism became a byword for any action deemed contrary to the public good. Now terrorism is becoming the same.
The PATRIOT Act was meant to be a temporary measure in order to quickly respond to a clear and present danger. It has been renewed for 12 years, even by our senior Sen. Richard Blumenthal, despite the dangers it poses to civil liberty.
Writing offensive messages on Facebook is not terrorism. Complaining about the water quality in Tennessee is not terrorism. Writing a letter to the editor is not terrorism. I am not a terrorist, and neither are you.