We already chose freedom here

Feb. 17, 2006 12:00 AM

A letter writer asks, "So would the writer prefer a U.S. police state or a nuclear one?" ("You choose: police or nuclear state," Letters, Saturday):

To answer the question simply: The United States is already a nuclear power that is quickly becoming a police state in the tradition of Soviet Russia, fascist Italy, communist China and Nazi Germany. We have a president who says his authority to listen in on phone conversations, without a warrant during wartime, is given to him by his "inherent" authority as commander in chief.

We have cities across the nation installing surveillance cameras to help "fight and deter crime." We have laws under the Orwellian name of the Patriot Act that allow the FBI to use "national security letters" to garner private information about you, all without a warrant. Heck, even the Department of Homeland Security sounds an awful lot like the Soviet "Committee for State Security," or KGB.

We have American citizens who think it is patriotic to spout, "If you have nothing to hide, why not allow the government to search without warrants?"

Our country was not founded on the principle that we have to choose security over freedoms. It was founded on the principles that our freedoms are the foundations for our security.

The question that should be asked is, "Why should we have to choose?"

Ted McIntyre Phoenix, Arizona

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