As we remember the events and honor those whose lives were given on September 11, let us also reflect on the political meaning of that event. 9/11 renewed patriotism. I can remember being at church the Sunday following, singing the anthem America the Beautiful, with tears streaming down my face. Unfortunately, some politicians took advantage of that patriotism to advance their own agenda, as was clearly evident in the Bush Administration’s decision to go to war with Iraq on false pretenses. The people, veterans and their families especially, of the United States still live with the consequences of that decision.
I worked in information technology at Cornell University at the time of that event. Almost immediately, I was drawn into a national discussion about the impact that the USA-Patriot Act (“Patriot Act”) had on electronic surveillance in general and on higher education and libraries in particular. There has been almost no reform in that area. The Patriot Act amended the Electronic Privacy Communications Act, originally promulgated in 1986 — seven years before the internet became open to the public -- in a manner that favored the government at the expense of individuals and institutions that represent individualism such as schools and libraries. To date, no reform has reset the balance between “privacy and security.” To the contrary. Eavesdropping capabilities, together with the power of data gathering, combining and selling, has grown exponentially much to the detriment of both citizens and consumers.
The article I wrote to summarize government surveillance issues remains as poignant today as it was then. It can be accessed by clicking on this hypertext: Civil Privacy and National Security Legislation: A Three Dimensional View
I welcome your thoughts and feedback.
Upcoming Events (Amended) (Events in bold are Tracy Mitrano for Congress specific events)
Tomorrow, September 12: Tuesdays with Tracy, video conference conversation on 23 District Politics. Please send your email address if you would like to join!
September 14 Tracy will give a videotaped interview at Pegasus Studios, Ithaca. Public release of video to be announced
September 16, 11:00 Mitrano Announcement, Yates County Courthouse, Penn Yan
September 16, 7-9 Announcement Party, Publick Coffee Bar, 13 Main Street, Penn Yan
September 16 3:00 p.m. Hear the candidates for 23rd Congressional District! Parkside Drive, Ellicottville
September 17 2:00 - 5:00 p.m. Meet and Greet event sponsored by Citizens for a Better 23rd, Hornell
September 17, 4-6:30, Tompkins County Democratic Committee Picnic, Stewart Park Ithaca
September28 6:00 pm The Steuben Livingston Central Labor Council and the Chemung Schuyler Central Labor Council at the United Steelworkers union hall in Corning(100 Civic Center Plaza).
September 28, 5:30 - 8: 30 p.m. Fundraiser for Corning City Democrats, 22 East Market Street, Corning***
September 29, 6-8, Meet Tracy Mitrano at Microclimate, Linden Avenue, Geneva
September 30, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. House Party for Tracy Mitrano, Vickie Everett’s, 104 Greenridge Drive, Horseheads, 14845, telephone (607 731 5127)
October 4 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Fundraiser for Chemung County Democrats***, Hill Top
October 5, Fundraiser for Corning Democratics
October 21 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Cattaraugus-Allegany-Chautauqua Dems to Hold Straw Poll for 23rd Congressional District, Randolph Fire Hall, 70 Main St.