A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

Bear Cubs outfielder and pitcher Alex Leopard strikes out the side to close out the 21-9 victory against College of Marin on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023 in Santa Rosa.
Bear Cubs Spotlight: Alex Leopard
Oliver Kindt, Sports Reporter • February 26, 2024
An additional four to six-week delay faces students who have already submitted their FAFSA for 2024-2025 academic year.
FAFSA Updates Result in More Delays
Amy Moore, Reporter • February 14, 2024

Are we living in a police state

“I want a nation of laws, not a nation of men.”- John Adams
My definition of a police state is any state with control over the media and social behavior, economic command and unbridled political power. When power is centralized at the extreme in which it is currently in America, it will be abused thus corrupting the system. The centralization of our government now percolates every aspect of our society and our lives, thus corrupting our society and marginalizing the purpose of being American in the first place.

The federal government has lost its way. They don’t seem to understand that the feds natural role in government is to set the rules and protect people from states who abuse their authority. So the entire notion of federal police begs the question, “Who checks the federal police when they break their own rules and abuse the power they have given themselves?”

The Patriot Act took away our basic civil right to privacy expressly given to Americans by the Constitution in the Fourth Amendment. I guess wiretapping isn’t so bad if you’re not the bad guy, but why does it have to be unwarranted? And what’s up with the act allowing the feds to search my house whenever they want? It’s America, get a warrant you damn tyrant. I hated that bill from the beginning, still do.

Corporate media and our intelligence gathering process known as “the news” to most Americans, is compromised and feeds you only the information they feel as though you need in a manner in which they can predict your response. Then they fill up the between time by advertising a bunch crap like Slinkys and Chia Pets. In this way, our corporatist plutocracy is sufficiently controlling the masses. In the words of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.” It’s little wonder as to why the Wall Street crooks get away with security violations and fraudulent practices on a daily basis, yet they have most Americans convinced the people protesting this insanity are the bad guys. How perverse is that society and where is its conscience? Did Christ not run the money-changers out of the temple?
Control of the media and illegal search and seizures aren’t enough, now they want to spy on us with drones, lots of drones.

The Air Force estimates the states will have 30,000 drones up spying around on Americans by 2020. Maybe there are legitimate reasons to use a drone in America i.e. border security, a missing person in the woods, etc., but 30,000 is an overt grab for unusual authority under usual conditions. Why do you need 30,000 of them? I suspect it’s because they intend to make them a part of our everyday lives. Cato reminds us, “We know by infinite examples and experience, that men possessed with power, rather than part with it, will do anything, even the worst and the blackest, to keep it…It is the nature of power to be ever encroaching, and converting every extraordinary power, granted at particular times, and upon particular occasions, into an ordinary power, to be used at all times, and when there is no occasion, nor does it ever part willingly with any advantage.”

With the signing of the National Defense Authorization Act, we know the plutocracy will not stop at torture, indefinite detention or assassinations. Yesterday, F.B.I. Director Robert Mueller, confirmed to the House that it is now legal for the president to deem whoever he wants, a terrorist, and without so much as a notice of the charge against them, the president can order that person to be targeted and killed, even if he is an American citizen on American soil. The act makes food activists, terrorists. Do you think Monsanto had any say on that?

This is clearly a set up. How the hell does one person get that authority in America? Why isn’t there a judicial committee in the Congress that can review the evidence and make a decision based on the evidence? By definition, one guy getting too legally say who gets killed without a trial is autocratic, not democratic.
As far as the political power in America is concerned, don’t even think for one second that the people have it, because they don’t. The Citizens United Supreme Court decision of 2009 has opened the floodgates for corporations and gigantic banks to simply use money to sway politics. It doesn’t matter if the rhetoric is left or right. Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are stuffed deep inside the same pockets of international bankers. The funders of the system are in the driver’s seat of the economic and political order of America and the globe is their stage. It is a system that does not allow for power to the people. It is power to commerce and trade, power to profit. Freedom and liberty be dammed.

If you don’t think you are living in a police state, think again. They control everything. We live in a society that has police killing 500 people with tasers over the last 10 years, but nobody hears about that on the “news”. In fact, the government will still say that tasers are safe. Tell that to the family of the 20-year-old girl that was tased, while handcuffed, last week while fleeing from a policeman in Florida. The tase froze her body stiff; she then flopped to the ground hitting her head hard enough for the doctors to give her a permanent vegetative state prognosis. She’s young, handcuffed, in trouble with law, probably scared and embarrassed, so she decides to make a run for it. Does that means she deserves to pay for it with her life? Hell no, shocking the hell out of neighbors and letting them helplessly fall to suffer a broken neck, brain damage or death is insanity. If it’s not insane, we should all agree that the punishment does not fit the crime making it unjustifiable and immoral.
Americans are now faced with the reality of cameras watching our every move, invasive agencies like the transportation security agency (who grope women and spread cancer through radiation X-ray machines that have been proven not to work), suspension of the Constitution, suspension of habeas corpus, being labeled a terrorist if you like to recite the Bill of Rights, 30,000 drones coasting through our city streets and rural landscapes, indefinite detention, assassinations of Americans and now the House has passed a bill to make it illegal to protest. I never thought I would see this in America. Soon they will have us all packing a Real I.D. card with a GPS tracking chip so they can keep dibs on whomever the plutocrats see as a threat.

Whether you want to admit it or not the corrupt American government is hitting the people from all directions. I would like to think John Adams was right, that we should be a nation of laws. But we are no longer a nation of laws; we are a nation of the corporations. The plutocrats do not look to the laws of the past because they have no relevance. Old laws need modification in order to protect the power and wealth of the current plutocracy. Modernizing laws that erode civil liberties and basic human rights to all Americans such as the NDAA and The Patriot Act have got to go. How in the name of Jesus Harold can an American be locked up as a terrorist for protesting the fact that our government openly allows corporations to poison our food supply? That type of tyrannical nonsense is why the Founders rebelled to begin with. Martial law is now legal in this country, the plutocrats just better hope it’s not declared on them first.

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Drew Sheets, Staff Writer

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