In a previous post Anarchy in the UK I stated “I fear that this is all it will take to finally engulf the UK in an Orwellian nightmare. It has been said that you could walk across London without ever being off camera. Making matters worse, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron is using these riots as an excuse to justify tyranny.” According to Cameron “Britain is considering a raft of new measures related to crowd control, gang membership and social-media communications, in an effort to prevent a repeat of rioting and looting that exploded across the country this week.” It would seem that the British Prime Minister is making good on his threats. Cameron later told the House Of Commons “Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill. So we are working with the police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality.”
Cameron can be heard advocating tyranny in the video below.
Does this mean that the authorities should cut off telephones because some people may use them to plan a crime? What about cars? I mean someone could use a vehicle to commit a crime, so why don’t we just ban driving?
Officials from RIM (makers of Blackberry), Facebook, and Twitter met with British Home Secretary Theresa May to discuss the role of social media in the UK riots. A Home Office spokesman had this to say about the meeting “The discussions looked at how law-enforcement and the networks can build on the existing relationships and cooperation to crack down on the networks being used for criminal behaviour.” Several human rights organizations including Amnesty International have sent an open letter to the British government stating “New measures, made in good faith but in a heated political environment, will overextend powers in ways that would be susceptible to abuse, restrict legitimate, free communication and expression and undermine people’s privacy.”
What happens across the pond may soon become a reality here in the states. In fact it’s already happening. Last month authorities in San Fransisco shut down cell phones in an effort to quell a protest. They weren’t trying to prevent violence or looting. Bay Area Rapid Transit officials shut down cell phone service at several stations in order to quiet the voice of the people. The post rampant police misconduct details how Officer Johannes Mehserle shot an unarmed Oscar Grant in the back. This is what people were attempting to protest before their right to dissent was cut off by the police.
How long will we let the powers that be stifle the voice of dissent? The time to stand up to oppression is now. When we can’t even protest injustice what recourse do we have?