There will be the biggest ever rally against the NSA down in DC this coming Saturday at 12pm-3pm – over
3,000 4,000 people have already signed up. I’ll be heading down there Saturday morning, and it would be great if BMGers would be willing to join me.
Right now the NSA is spying on everyone’s personal communications, without any meaningful oversight. October 26th is the 12th anniversary of the signing of the US Patriot Act, and we’ll be handing half a million petition signatures to Congress to remind them that they work for us – and that we won’t tolerate mass surveillance any longer.
To tell the truth, as a progressive Democrat, I had high hopes of Senator Obama that, as President, he would roll back Bush’s surveillance state. Then, after he voted for the FISA Amendments Act in 2008, it became clear that this wouldn’t be a priority for him, and that his defense of the surveillance state would help to burnish a DC-based bipartisan consensus in favor of it. But now, we see that consensus cracking, as it becomes clear how much the NSA has lied about what it is doing, how much they have kept even Congress in the dark, and how much their mass surveillance programs are damaging our foreign policy, harming tech exports, undermining the basic structure of the Internet and destroying jobs – to say nothing of their demolition of the Fourth Amendment. So progressive Democrats, libertarian Republicans and third-party and independent voters are coming together to take down this major danger to the body politic. Much as I like the President, and feel kin to him in so many ways, he’s dead wrong on this, and that needs to change.
I’m working with the ACLU, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the national Restore the Fourth Coalition, and my own Massachusetts-based outfit Digital Fourth. We’re arranging rideshares down from Boston, and there are buses leaving from NYC and Philly too. We’re also planning a simultaneous event in Boston; please email Raquel for details.
So, if you happen to have some time to spare, if you don’t mind hanging out with a truly cross-partisan crowd of people concerned about NSA surveillance, and you’d like to hear some cool musicians and speakers, please come on down!