By ANTONIA HERNANDEZ
Teen Takeover staff
For the past four years, President George Walker Bush has enacted the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001. Though many are not aware of what this act does, it has affected many of us, without our knowing.
The USA PATRIOT Act stands for Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001. Four-hundred pages in length, this act was enacted about 45 days after the terrorism attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
This act allows the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to grant warrants that go against our basic Fourth Amendment rights by allowing FISC judges to grant warrants for searches and seizures based not on probable cause as stated in the Constitution, but on mere suspicion.
This states that discrimination within our court system on the federal government level can happen.
America, the land of immigrants. But dont look like a Muslim, or our federal court system will put you in jail for up to six-month increments because you look like a terrorist.
For years preceding the attacks of Sept. 11, American Muslims were another ingredient in our countrys melting pot, able to go about their daily lives as they pleased with little or no fear. Now, because two buildings went down, our entire country has gone screaming in terror of their Muslim neighbor who lives next to them.
Worse than that, Muslims around our nation must live in fear of discrimination within public school systems, churches and even just the man walking down the street.
According to the 2005 edition of The Baylor Briefs, more than 7,000 Muslims within our country have been searched and surveilled without knowing. Their homes have been looked through for information that could link them to a group similar to the Taliban. Their phone and Internet lines have been monitored, sometimes for months, on the off chance that they could be a terrorist.
It is completely insane. The constitutional rights that our Founding Fathers fought to keep for our countrys budding democracy are being threatened today, by one Republican and his way of getting back at a terrorist group.
You bomb us? We bomb you. This is the new motto Bush has enacted into our society. If someone does something to you, lets do it right back. Revenge is the sweet, sweet reward.
And all the while Bush is trying to save our country from the forces of evil, he’s putting fear into innocent people’s lives because we simply do not know if our homes are being searched. Muslim groups are being chilled in their rights to express free speech and religion because it could result in an FBI file branding them as extremists or terrorists.
I feel that we are going about the Sept. 11 attacks completely wrong. Yes, it affected 3,000 lives. But right here, right now, were affecting 7,000 lives who aren’t dying but are suffering for what they haven’t done.
I am sick of lousy presidents doing what they feel is the right thing and messing up our economy, raising our national debt, and putting innocent troops in the line of fire for a war he himself wouldn’t fight. When he did have the chance to fight for his country, he chickened out.
Right here, right now, our soldiers are on the front lines fighting a war that has no purpose to it anymore. We haven’t found weapons of mass destruction. We haven’t found Osama bin Laden. We’re now trying to install democracy into a nation that had close to nothing to do with these Sept. 11 attacks!
Fight for a cause. Dont fight for revenge.
Antonia Hernandez attends William Penn Senior High School