Back in 2000, I remember reading George Orwell’s 1984 for my contemporary literature class and thinking that there was no way the world envisioned by Mr. Orwell could exist during my lifetime. However, the recent leak of the government’s PRISM program has revealed that data such as your phone calls, visited websites and sent emails are being tracked and stored by the National Security Agency (NSA). Participants in the PRISM project include Microsoft, Google, Facebook, AOL, Skype, YouTube and Apple.
You may think to yourself, “I am not doing anything illegal, so who cares if the government is keeping tabs on me?” The problem is that the government has secretly set up a network that allows them to keep tabs on everything digital. Privacy, which has always been a staple of freedom, is essentially dead in this day and age. What you may see as a joke you wrote on a friend’s Facebook wall is now stored on a government database and could be used to justify the government taking action against you in the future. PRISM does not only store data on suspected terrorists, it stores data on everyone.
The two main political parties will use the PRISM project as a talking point against one another during debates and 24 hour news channels, but I am writing this article to ask you to keep in mind that both parties support this project as a means to enhance our security and it is not going away. We as citizens should not get distracted by finger pointing and focus on the actual issue, big brother is watching you. Ask yourself, is this program worth my loss of privacy and is it necessary to stop terrorism?
P.S. This blog will forever be stored on a government server along with the fact that you read it. Did you feel that chill on the back of your neck too?