The recent exposure of the National Security Agency (NSA) spying on American citizens points to corruption of power that is at work to some degree in most aspects of our society. The social contracts we’ve known in the past are no longer being honored as profit overrides social good.

Education, home ownership, health insurance and tax dollars are all keys to a healthy society. But now many graduates are without jobs, mortgages are subject to fraud and insurance companies drop people if a claim is made. Public schools are closing, bridges collapsing, and war veterans are left to fend for themselves.

Big money is immune to the law while citizens who stand in the way of profit are labeled terrorists and journalists are threatened with prison if they print a story. Security is a key word used to justify unlimited power by those who have it. It is becoming obvious that it is not the security of the people that is being protected, but that of big money.

Thinking about the state of our country is complex and frustrating. We can’t single-handedly change the world. But we can vote with our dollar, sign petitions, grow some food, help our neighbors and volunteer where we can.

We can also remember that surveillance, fear and shame are powerful tools used to suppress and control. We can act in small ways, and gather the courage to speak the truth as we see it to help negotiate a better world.

 

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