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You Know What You Can Do With Polls — Why Now?
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You Know What You Can Do With Polls

As both Billmon in Vox Pollsteri and Athenae in It Doesn’t Matter If You Like It point out, the law is not a popularity contest.

If you pull people over for speeding or running a stop sign, they don’t say: “Thank you for making me aware that I was putting others in danger.” People don’t like vehicle and traffic laws. The “55mph speed limit” saved lives and gas, but it certainly wasn’t a popular choice.

There are ways to change laws, and to amend the Constitution. If people don’t like the Fourth Amendment protections or the right to privacy, they can act to change them.

But, until the people act to make changes, violating the current rights and protections given to people is illegal. There is a “technical” term for people who do it: criminal.


1 Jack K. { 05.15.06 at 11:26 pm }

…what is fascinating is that a concurrent Newsweek poll that said that a majority of Americans weren’t all that cool with the idea of their phone records being turned over to the NSA. As usual, how you ask the question makes too much of a difference to trust any one poll…

2 Bryan { 05.15.06 at 11:37 pm }

It’s a game, Jack. You see it in your area on forest issues, and I see it on coastal issues. They word the question to get the answer they want.

3 Karen { 05.16.06 at 7:44 am }

Exactly…this was a FAB piece. These are not *negotiable* as the underlying basis for our Country’s civil rights. And those that advocate abrogating them absent the appropriate process are not Patriots nor supporting our country…they are only propping up this evil sham-President and their own party-power aspirations.

4 Steve Bates { 05.16.06 at 9:35 am }

The whole point of formally enumerating rights in the Bill of Rights is not to restrict rights to only those listed, but to put at least a few basic rights explicitly beyond the reach of the “tyranny of the majority.” Policy matters are subject to a vote, by the public or their representatives. Rights aren’t.

Somebody needs to give Bush, Cheney et al a refresher course in the particulars of that Constitution they swore to uphold and defend. Considering how often they are violating it these days, I wouldn’t mind if they learned those lessons while serving jail terms. Criminals, indeed.

5 Bryan { 05.16.06 at 11:40 am }

What makes it even more “annoying” is that same people who are trolling through everyone else’s phone records refuse to release any information about who is involved in major policy decisions, like the energy task force.