American Naïveté (Part 1): “If you have nothing to hide…”

In Hot Water : img by Tim Sheppard
In Hot Water : img by Tim Sheppard
Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership
Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership

USA –  -(Ammoland.com)-  [DRGO Editor: On the occasions of our November elections and last week’s farewell to Fidel Castro, we present a 2-part series by Dr. Faria, reprinted by permission from Hacienda Publishing, with a message that America can always use.  Part 2 appears Thursday.]

In a previous article, “European social democracies and gun control,” I wrote that many Americans are extremely naïve when it comes to trusting the government with their liberties. In fact, there is an interesting dichotomy because citizens mistrust the economic acumen of government and don’t trust it with their wallets, but it is a different story with personal liberty!

Thus, we continue to hear the expression, “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.”

The fact is Americans have lived in freedom for so long, we are not only too trusting with liberty, but like the proverbial frog in the warm bath, don’t even notice when our freedoms are being eroded piecemeal.

I do not know the Telegraph letter-writer, Geraldine Parker or her politics, but she received an avalanche of verbal reprimands and heaps of derision from both liberals and conservatives, both in print and online, for her temerity to express emotionally her concerns about personal privacy.

Despite the accusations of hysteria and paranoia (and admittedly I do have a soft spot for defending the underdog), the fact remains that even paranoids have enemies, as Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir reminded Secretary of State Henry Kissinger during his celebrated 1973 “shuttle diplomacy,” when he wanted Israel to make territorial concessions. Had Israel not held control of the territories gained in the 1967 conflict, the Jewish State would have been pushed into the sea in the initially successful surprise attack of the 1973 Yom Kippur War!

Mr. Jim Huber was one of the chastisers of Ms Parker. He received his own energetic reproof from an irate on-line reader, Bob White, who wrote:

“The Patriot Act and the War on Drugs have gutted the 4th Amendment. Our government and law enforcement monitor our phone calls, internet, mail, what books you read, all without a warrant signed by a judge. Road blocks take place daily under which we can be searched without a warrant. Under the ‘sneak and peek’ provision of the Patriot Act, our homes can be searched without our even knowing about it. It’s easy to see, Mr. Huber, that you are one of the sheep who won’t even bleat as you are led to be fleeced or slaughtered.”

These are strong words but White has a point as to the loss of American freedom.

Consider the revelations that have come to light on domestic surveillance; the political abuses of the IRS targeting conservatives; abuses of the ATF and other federal agencies, etc. And if still in doubt, try to exit the country or even fly outside the U.S., not with a gun in your travel bag — but with your hard-earned money — and see what happens!

All of this loss of freedom has taken place in the name of security and safety, taken place with little resistance from the uninformed and acquiescent general public — and despite Ben Franklin’s admonition! [Editor: “A Republic, if you can keep it.”]  History confirms the danger of government run amok and exercising too much power. And for those who still hold to the naïveté, “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear,” I will conclude with a summation of what might happen to (and should be feared by) the trusting and unwary citizen — as a result of the cryptic and myriad of laws and regulations in the federal books in the concluding Part 2 of this commentary.

 

—  Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D. is a retired Clinical Professor of Neurosurgery and Adjunct Professor of Medical History at Mercer University School of Medicine. He is Associate Editor in Chief and World Affairs Editor of Surgical Neurology International. He served on the CDC’s Injury Research Grant Review Committee.

All DRGO articles by Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D.

Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, a project of the Second Amendment Foundation. www.drgo.us

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Vanns40
Vanns40
4 years ago

If you are old enough to look back to the 50’s (I am) and realize the freedoms you have lost, gradually and incrementally over the decades, it’s absolutely astounding. Most of it under the guise of “making us safer” and another good chunk relating to not offending others in one way or another. Today’s kids have no idea what real freedom, as originally designed by the Founders, actually means. The blame does not fall on Liberals alone, Conservatives share equally in the blame. We may well be past the point of ever recovering what we once had.

Larry Brickey
Larry Brickey
4 years ago
Reply to  Vanns40

Sadly, true.

Tionico
Tionico
4 years ago
Reply to  Vanns40

True enough.. until you come to your last sentence. I don’t think we’re past the point of no return. Fact is, I do not recall ever seeing articles, nor responses to them, of this nature in public until the kinyun was busying himself about ascending the throne. Starting mainly with the few who understood the qualifications for holding the presicency, and realisng he did NOT qualify, the veiln began to be peeled back. With this most recent election and the massive corruption and pay to play that was exposed, and the ensuing results, I believe there are plenty of signs… Read more »

Gil
Gil
4 years ago
Reply to  Vanns40

Once again for White men. Black people were still lynched and killed legally in the 1950’s. Gee why can’t Black people get as misty-eyed about the “good ol’ days” then?

Idadho
Idadho
4 years ago
Reply to  Gil

Gil, What black people were killed “legally” in the 50’s ? Yes, there were Jim Crowe laws in the south but blacks were making great strides in the 60’s before liberal Democrat racist LBJ stepped on their necks with his Great Society program.

Gil
Gil
4 years ago
Reply to  Idadho

The Emmet Till case was the big case that open the eyes of the nation to how Blacks were being legally killed in the U.S.

Idadho
Idadho
4 years ago
Reply to  Gil

As tragic as the Emmet Till case was, it was not legalized murder or lynching. There was difficulty identifying Emmet Till’s body because it was so mutilated. There are plenty of similar cases where the killers of white people are not convicted because there is not adequate evidence. There are lots of hateful reasons why people are killed, skin color is just one reason in the many. We will always have evil and hateful people in this world. We cannot blame everyone for the actions of a few.

Wild Bill
Wild Bill
4 years ago
Reply to  Vanns40

@Vanns, Yes, it is the tyranny of good intentions. Young people may never know the freedom of buying a firearm in the same way that we buy a car. Meaning going to any hardware store, paying cash, and leaving with your receipt, firearm, and a box of ammunition.

2nd Amender
2nd Amender
4 years ago

“in the jungle, paranoia and fear could keep you alive……… but even then, you had to learn the lessens the hard way”.

Timely information and relevant thoughts on the loss of Freedoms most Americans didn’t know they have.

Is it just me or do mostly those men and women who served in the Armed Forces have a better grip on what the government bureaucrats try to pull off as a better way to do things?

Gil
Gil
4 years ago

“The fact is White Christian men have lived in freedom for so long, we are not only too trusting with our liberty, but like the proverbial frog in the warm bath, don’t even notice when others are being .”

Fixed it for you.

Jim
Jim
4 years ago
Reply to  Gil

Fixed what ? Are you another one of these idiots that think it always about race. What is it with you people? I am not referring to color whatever that is? Try turning on your brain, if you can, it is always about power. Go back and read the history books you ignored in school. People have enslaved others since the creation of man. Doesn’t mean that we have to continue to allow others to rule us. Sheesh.

Gil
Gil
4 years ago
Reply to  Jim

The old “aw come on officer there others speeding faster than me!” defense.

Mick
Mick
4 years ago
Reply to  Gil

Gil, why not go and infest some liberal site, who will think you are intelligent, we here think you are an ignorant troll !
Asta la vista !!

Idadho
Idadho
4 years ago
Reply to  Mick

Gil has a somewhat valid though incomplete point. Since white christian men have had far less interaction with cops and policing authority figures, many have become callous to the invasions made by such authorities. Plus, when a white man complains about violations of privacy, they do not have a Jesse Jackson or the many more current mouthpieces screaming to the press. The truth is cops are equal opportunity violators. White christians have had their privacy violated by cops for decades. They peacefully volunteered to allow these violations. This has emboldened the cops. First, it was for our safety. Now cops… Read more »

Tionico
Tionico
4 years ago
Reply to  Gil

Gil you fixed naught….. as always. “white christian men”? WHy single out THAT demographic? Maybe MONEYED or CONNECTED white males would be more accurate. Gil has been showing up on sites like this for a while now, tossing the proberbial tird into the punchbowl and laughing as he watches the reactions. A time waster. Wonder how much HE gets paid, and by whom…… I’m a regular white guy, lived on the West Coast of this continent all my life, am not perticularly wealthy though not poor either. My faith/lack of it is meaningliess in this context. Yet I’ve been abued,… Read more »