Alberto Gonzales spoke before law students at Georgetown [University] today, justifying illegal, unauthorized surveilance of US citizens, but during the course of his speech the students in class did something pretty ballsy and brave. They got up from their seats and turned their backs to him.
The pic above has really cheered me up. There’s the Attorney General, spouting some bullshit in an attempt to justify the illegal surveillance of American citizens. And there are some future lawyers shunning him.
Think of the courage that kind of protest takes in the US right now, a country that is rapidly approaching the old Soviet Union in terms of state repression, media toothlessness and a never-ending war against “the enemy.” Just take any old Soviet speech and replace “capitalists” with “terrorists” and you’ve got the gist of it.
What if you want freedom? Freedom of speech, movement, to not be spied on by your own government? What if you want liberty? Well, hell, are you a terrorist? Only a terrorist or a terrorist sympathiser would dare question the almighty government. In fact, you no longer have a right to question. Anything you say will be held against you and presumably added to some NSA file. Imagine the old KGB with the technology that the modern US agencies have access to…
So, that’s why I salute these students. In making their protests, they’ve been photographed, it’ll be on their records. They’ll probably be investigated / wiretapped. It will certainly affect their future employment opportunities. They knew all this before they decided to make a stand. And yet they decided the future of their country was more important than their own personal status. Would you do the same?