Security or Freedom?

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This certainly give me pause. . . . . After 9/11 most of the US was united on security and 100% prevention of the horror of that day. As  time has passed and the news of treatment of prisoners for enhanced interrogation, NSA spying, and  the lack of  personal privacy has surfaced including at airports,  many Americans including me are questioning which is more important. Or is it possible to have it both ?

This last week in India, the government has shut down many sites on the internet.  I  have had difficulties getting on Facebook at different times during the day. . . early in the morning and later at night. Hmm, times when people would be at home.  The explanation was for protection as there was definite information of terrorist activity in India and the government wanted to protect the people from possible terrorist planning, posts, and attacks.

That sounds credible, right?  We all want to be safe from terrorist activity!   But we  want freedom of press, to assemble, of religion,  of speech and movement, all freedoms from the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

When the group went to  register for immigration, to get WiFi at the University, even check into the hostel, they need Passport photos, copies of their passport, copies of their stamped pages of the Passport and these  are requested time after time.  David told them to bring 20 copies of everything. At immigration and the Chief of Police , they need to be interviews in order to be registered.  There are penalties as an answer to some of you who might think, “Why bother. . . just not do it all?”  One group a few years ago did just that out of ignorance  and on departure from the country, two were unable to leave the country without the proper stamp on their papers, neither of which they had. The other students were allowed to leave, again without the proper papers.  The two  were forced to stay in a hotel for a week while many phone calls were made between India and America.   They were students with a heritage of different countries in the world.  Often it is hard  for people or even countries to understand that Americans are from all over the world.  We have a boy in this group now who is repeatedly asked if he is African and he always say without hesitation that he is from “America.” Another is asked if he is from China, and he replies “From America.”  This is the grand experiment which began in 1776 and continues today, though battled fatigued and  often limping along.

So this brings me to this poster with words from two American leaders  with many years separating them,  saying more or less the same thoughts.

I guess what I am concerned about is “who” is making these decisions for all of us. . .  .. choosing freedom and/or security? For me, I want “A government for and by the people, where there is justice and liberty for all.”

What say you ?

12 Responses to Security or Freedom?

  1. Trinity says:

    It’s a nice dream to want a government who works for their citizens instead of government interests and games. In a world of 7 billion people, where are our power to say STOP!? To whom did we gave it to?! Why are we still sheep? To keep our sad lives the way they are “safe” and “controlled by us”? So why do we keep desiring our freedom from it all?! (sorry, to many questions and no answers…) We are trapped and we don’t know what to do because, all over the world, there are no trust in anyone to have the leaders we all need.

    • annetbell says:

      Thanks so much for your thoughtful response! I agree that things are a mess. We keep being drawn in by politicians promising this or that and then they get in office and get seduced by wealth and power and forget the people who elected them. For me, this problem is rooted in a time thousands of years ago as told in 1 Samuel-10.God had lead the people through prophets and judges but the people wanted an earthly king like their neighbors. God said, all right but you will regret that desire and will be disappointed in him (the king). This truth, to me, is revealed over and over. Thanks!

  2. That’s a good question Annetbell: security and/or freedom? Actually one may be brought to answer both of them, but is this really possible? I do not think so… and for many reasons.
    One of the reasons is because in the name of God (and doesn’t matter which one) humanity is still committing the same heresy since thousand and thousand of years. It is enough to go back above the history… before and after the coming of the cristian Christ. If you look deeply, every single battle or war was, or it started up, in the name of some God.
    As far as I see, there is only one possibility to change but the stake is large and involve a total overhaul of our mindsets, our paradigms, our habits.
    The only one way to get out of the actual world mess is that people start to follow the buddhist path, with consciousness, developing a real deep love toward every living creature, toward the entire planet. These are good teachings, albeit not so easy to put on work since our habits are rotten and we have always fear to be judged from others.
    I’m following this wonderful Path since almost 30 years, not always easily to go since there are many ups and downs… but I try. I wont change the world, I only changed the way I look at it, trying to give a good example. Sometimes I have fallen, then I had to recollect my forced to stand up again, since I’m only human.
    In my novels and stories, blended with a lot of reality and fantasy combined, these are the message… and the response from the readers are nice and I know I’m doing it in a way full with compassion giving many suggestion to think about.
    Serenity :-)claudine

    • annetbell says:

      Ah serenity, something we all need and desire in this crazy world ! I am a follower of Christ because my life has been changed by my faith. I did want to tell you about a time I had in India. We were staying in Varanasi the holy site of Hinduism but went to Sarnath , one of the four holy sites designated by Buddha himself the day before he died. Sarnath was the site of his first sermon. It is a peace site of ruins and a huge stella where the sermon was given. The day we were there, many Buddhist pilgrims were walking and meditating in their saffron robes. I will always remember that. For me, though I have great respect for Budhasts and Jains of India, there are religions of atheism and though the qualities of life are very admirable, I believe in God the father, creator and Christ the Savior. I am so glad we had our chats! Blessings to you ! and of course Serenity!

      • No matter which is the God’s Name… there is only One Mighty.. Each one of us may choose the proper Path to follow. Buddhism Path isn’t the saffron robe or the meditation… alike the Cross and the Mass aren’t the only way to be good and share love and compassion toward all the living creatures.
        But is comfort to be taken where one person feels the Almighty, the Supreme Creator.
        Yes, I wish you love and serenity as well!
        :-)claudine

      • annetbell says:

        There is a youtube video which I tried to send to you, but I am not very good with computer. You can find it I am sure. Peace! Anne

      • Thank you Anne, I’m quite curious… I’m myself not very good with PC… but you should send me only the link (not the share-embed) otherwise I don’t know how to get to the right video 😉

      • annetbell says:

        Ok, will try again!

      • annetbell says:

        I am still looking for the first video, and will but this looks good. BBC does good work. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEe8hI6G0GY

        let me know if this doesn’t work!

      • annetbell says:

        You know, I have found that people of faith whatever the faith in a higher power have something in common that people of no faith. Some of the most amazing kind, gentle, spiritual journeyers are Hindu. I loved my time in India and especially the amazing Indian people! PS I didn’t know that Buddhism was started in India! 99% of the people in India, profess some faith system or another!

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