Riddle me this. If you were an Islamic extremist plotting to inflict some horrible damage upon the United States and her citizens, would it be easier to find you by spying on every American citizen or just spying on the mosques in our nation? I am not advocating either. However, if the government were serious about corrupting the 4th Amendment to make us all safer, then obviously the best way to go about it would be to monitor the mosques and the people who attend them. (Again – I don’t think that should happen.)
A just released editorial over at investors.com uncovers the fact that the FBI, NSA, and other federal agencies cannot (and will not) spy on mosques in the same manner that they have been spying on the rest of us. While they are also restricted from spying on churches and synagogues in a similar manner, the incredible realization is that the most obvious and likely place to find an Islamic extremist is not being surveilled, but the phones, emails, and other personal effects of millions of other Americans is.
In an attempt to keep us safe from Islamic extremist terrorists, our government is violating the rights of my 80+ year old Baptist grandfather, but they will not spy on the mosque that has been known to teach certain extremist beliefs?
Sure, mi Abuelo (my grandfather for all you anglophiles) who is mostly deaf, can barely see and doesn’t move around so well, definitely needs somebody to keep an eye on him. Might as well be the NSA.
The folks over at Breitbart.com did a little digging and found a near impenetrable wall of bureaucracy keeping mosques from being spied upon. Wow, wouldn’t it be nice if our government worked this hard to protect all of our rights? The best thing about the Constitution is that it doesn’t recognize differences between citizens and their rights – so what’s good for the goose (mosques, churches, synagogues) is also good for the gander (me and my abuelo…and you too).
These kinds of inequalities are what inevitably happen when the government oversteps the lines that have been drawn for it to operate within. It is vital for the health of our democracy and the strength of our liberties that we are all treated the same. Meaning – no one get’s spied on without probable cause, which then leads to a warrant.
That’s how it’s supposed to work.