Representative Darrell Issa of California and Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon proposed a bi-partisan effort to create a form of Bill of Rights for the internet, presumably, as a way to fight back against American Censorship of the Internet through CISPA, FISA, or similar legislation.
Representative Darrell Issa, on his website, Keep The Web Open, declares,
“I believe that individuals possess certain fundamental rights. Government should exist to protect those rights against those who would violate them. That is the revolutionary principle at the heart of the American Declaration of Independence and U.S.Constitution”
The drafted digital Bill of Rights created by Issa includes:
- the right to an uncensored internet
- all citizens are created equal on the internet
- citizens are free to associate and collaborate
- citizens have a right to privacy and to property
While the content of the bill does sound good, I am a little suspicious of the creator, Rep. Issa, who did vote YES on NDAA, and voted YES on CISPA. I wonder if such a bill were created, would it be limited to the language within Issa’s document, or would it be subject to politics, and thus, require someone like Issa to sponsor it?
And if Rep. Issa did have good intentions, and a bill was put together and passed, would this digital bill of rights actually do anything besides show presence in words? We have the Constitution, yet, members of Congress like Rep. Issa continue to vote for Unconstitutional Bills such as CISPA and NDAA.
What is truly needed isn’t a re-statement of the First and Fourth Amendments of the Constitution labeled as a digital bill of rights. What is truly needed is a change in philosophy through the spread of information. For as long as men like Representative Issa do not stand on principles and do not protect liberty before all else, the promises within “good legislation” will be empty.