As Americans become more aware of the dragnet surveillance programs being used against everyday Americans, and world opinion on the size and scope of these programs sours, a large scale rally is being organized in Washington D.C. The "Stop Watching Us" movement is a rally to restore the privacy of the internet and to stop the direct intrusion of the government into our day-to-day lives.
This issue affects everyone equally. There are strong signs of support from Democrats, Republicans, and Independents alike to find out how the programs are set-up, how the data is used, if these systems are legal, and if our government should be spending billions upon billions of dollars on it. Questions have also been raised on whether the inevitable damage to American cloud services is worth the increased security of knowing what Sally in Michigan had to eat today.
The rally organizers have made a Youtube video that outlines the problems and why speaking out against government surveillance is important. You can find it here. It features whistleblowers, actors, congressmen, and representatives from privacy agencies in a well thought-out argument against government surveillance.
The core argument is that the surveillance is without any suspicion of a crime being committed or plotted. These programs are designed to dig up as much information as possible about everyone, domestic or foreign, and then stored away for years. Every person is treated as a "target" and the supposed protection from the misuse of this data is people are not allowed to search the database without authorization. This raises all kinds of issues. What happens if a foreign power or a hacker gets control of this data? What happens if the political climate changes and allows this data to be misused? Who decides what is proper use of this information and what is unethical? How much money can we spend on the surveillance of ourselves? Is it all worth it?
Support the Stop Watching Us movement by letting everyone know about the issues, and getting to the rally if you can! Spread the word!