The European Union has inadvertently given a simple blueprint for U.S. citizens to regain some of their privacy post-9/11.
The U.S. government demanded that airlines flying into the United States must provide extensive, detailed passenger data that ranged from credit card numbers to meal preferences. The information on all passengers must be given within 15 minutes of departure, and noncompliance with the request could result in airlines paying fines of up to $6,000 per passenger and potentially losing landing privileges.
However, last Wednesday, the European Parliament threatened to get a court order to block this action.
By simply standing up to the U.S. government the E.U has taken a major step to stop the United States dead in its tracks when it comes to violating other world citizen’s individual rights in the name of security and anti-terrorism. U.S. citizens should take this cue and stand up for their own rights.
The resolution that the European Parliament passed states, “Such access is illegal under member state and E.U. privacy laws.” It also included the language that the Parliament “reserved the right” to mount a challenge at the European Court of Justice if the agreement is not changed.
Oddly enough, U.S. citizens have not mounted a similar campaign against the government. The U.S. Constitution and laws provide sweeping protection from the government violating the privacy of its citizens. But there has been no serious attempt to halt the U.S. government’s infringement on our civil liberties in the name of national security.
Americans must over come our fears of terrorism enough to demand that our rights to lives not watched and controlled by a government that uses the guise of security to remove our rights. Americans do not need protection from themselves, as the government tries to make it seem.
If the E.U has the ability to stand up for their rights, so do U.S. citizens. It is their duty to control the government, not have it control their lives. Americans must stand for privacy while they have the chance to escape “big brother’s” watchful gaze.