Looking at the way our governments operate today - and by 'our' I'm mostly talking about the UK and US - one has to wonder when exactly it was that we lost not only our way but our backbone. So completely controlled and owned are we that it has become apparent we will tolerate practically anything our governments impose on us providing they either  tell us it's keeping us safe or telling us which group needs demonising today in order that yet more of our rights and freedoms can be taken away from us. I used to think it was actually the job of our government, our security services, and our armed forces to protect our freedoms and rights. How wrong and how very naive I was.

I'm not sure I've ever entirely trusted our politicians at least not since the time I actually fully knew what a politician was. How can you trust anyone to have your best interests at heart when their only desire is to gain power and cling onto it at all costs? Yes, I realise there are good politicians but I've been made aware of so few they might as well not be there so anonymous and ineffective are they. We're having rights and freedoms taken away from us at a breathtaking rate but it's not that which infuriates me so badly, although it's bad enough, it's the acceptance of the people I can't stand and I pretty much include myself in that because I'm sat here writing and not actually doing anything of value to change the situation.

Look at the excuses we get for eroding our freedoms. The key one is that they are protecting us from terrorists. Well forgive me for being a bit slow and everything but seeing as we're always being told "They hate us for our freedoms" aren't we kind of letting those guys win if we don't have any bloody freedoms left? Disruption is the key factor in the effectiveness of terrorism and in that regard they've got us beaten hands down. Could you imagine a Patriot Act pre 9/11? Yes, terrorist atrocities are despicable and devastating, none more so than 9/11 so far but statistically you've got far more chance of being struck by lightning than dying in a terror attack, how many freedoms would you give up to protect you from lightning?

Freedom comes at a price, what good is it for us to be kept "safe" from the threat of terror if we are kept as property by our governments? Through the collection of data they will know what you've said, what you've looked at, who you've called, where you've been. I do realise that they won't be interested in the overwhelming majority of us but will it really end at saving us from the bearded explody people? I seem to recall other anti-terror laws being abused by the likes of local councils how do we expect this to be any different. And this is just the thin end of the wedge too.

Have you noticed we're governed with fear more often? In America, long-held as the land of the free, there was a terrorist attack in Boston and the result of this was pretty much martial law being imposed on the city while an ever more militarised police force searched property without warrant or reasonable cause beyond "SOMEONE WENT IN THIS HOUSE!!". Wherever we turn we're being squeezed by draconian legislation. Speech laws, social media laws, don't speak your mind, don't upset anybody or we'll send you to prison, the police will beat and kill you if you step even vaguely out of line, no freedom of information laws apply to your "betters". We live in societies where those who are supposed to lead us are corrupt and often despicable and evil. They can lie, steal and cheat and get nothing worse than a slap on the wrist and quite often a promotion. Crimes are covered up, laws pushed through our respective systems regardless of public opinion. We're lost.

It's no conspiracy theory to point these things out. They're happening right in front of us, in broad daylight and we're now feeling powerless to prevent them. We feel either a hopeless anger or a crippling apathy knowing that our usual means of changing those at the top are now useless. Want to organise a march? You'll need a permit. Want to protest? That might not be allowed and if it is you stand a good chance of getting your head caved in by a police officer. Want to vote the current bunch of leaches out of office? No problem, they don't mind because that won't change anything either. Those promises from the opposition float away like dust in the wind once they're in power.

I can't help thinking previous generations might have taken a stand. At the height of the terrorism carried out by the IRA our governments refused to hand more powers to our security services. People took pride in picking themselves up, dusting themselves down, and carrying on because they know to do otherwise meant handing the reins of power to the enemy. It's that blitz spirit, over the pond maybe it's the spirit of independence. It's all gone now though, somewhere down the line we lost our backbone and our 'betters' know it. How else could they flaunt their shameless abuses of power in our faces with such wild abandon?

They've so very nearly got us now, we are so close to being powerless that they can taste it. They know they won't be hanging outside their halls of power by their necks, they know we'll either take their bullshit excuses hook line and sinker or simply wallow in a quiet and apathetic rage about what they're doing. I've always said I hate presenting problems without solutions but this time I'm stuck, guys. I'm stuck.


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Hayden is the founder of Trigger Warning so it’s all his fault.

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