Essay Preview: Patriot Act
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I feel that the Patriot Act was a necessary, although hasty, effort to secure our nation. The measures it provides for are, at appearance, an erosion of our civil liberties, but a closer examination reveals that the act seeks to preserve our freedoms. I must state that there some sections of the Act that I do not feel are relevant to national security or terrorism, but the overall nature of the Act I agree with.
The government needs to do a better job of explaining its actions to the public and to justify any extraordinary measures that it takes, regardless of motive. The PATRIOT Act seeks to help untie the long-bound hands of law enforcement and to enable them to better track and arrest terrorist. Although the Act is broad, it is not unlimited and its power is finite. Congress has the power of oversight on any action based upon the Act.
“Extraordinary times demand extraordinary measures” is a old maxim of those who wish to further the governments power, yet in this age of global terrorism and increased crime, it is also true. While I see the need for the PATRIOT Act, I also see the need to ensure that the powers enumerated within it are carried in a lawful manner. With powers these broad, it is of great concern that the government might abuse the trust given to it by the citizens. It is the responsibility of all government agents to ensure that the trust is never broken and that the powers will be used only in their intended ways.