SOPA (and its equally dangerous cousin PIPA) could if passed be the death of the internet as we know it. As such they have sparked a massive viral campaign of “Friday”esque proportions. Every site which allows any sort of user uploading, or commenting is in a mad frenzy. Finally it seems that the general population has realized that our government has to be stopped.
Too bad it’ll be all for nought. I’m not saying the bill will pass; that’s actually rather irrelevant in this case. The seas will be calmed as the millions of once furious internet users return to their daily routine of listening to illegally uploaded copies of Justin Bieber and torrenting poorly translated copies of the Romanian release of “Tropic Thunder.”
This is all good fun and the general population will surely remove themselves from the nasty world of politics. And this is where we will fail.
Last month the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) was signed into law allowing for the indefinite detention of U.S. citizens without trial. The internet barely let lose a hiccup in contrast with what SOPA has caused. Why is this, you ask?
Well I think that’s been addressed already: “Tropic Thunder” is just that good of a movie. Most people care more about SOPA because its passage would have a tangible effect on their daily lives. Whether a handful of their fellow Americans may be subjected to indefinite detention, sometime in the future and in a remote location, is more difficult to be upset about. Succumbing to this apathy — merely stopping SOPA and returning to business as usual — would be a grave mistake. After all, it’s awful hard to post about how you had a great weekend when you are sitting in Guantanamo.
To think that the NDAA is of no threat to you would be foolish. Every group of people has at some time been considered a “terrorist” — whether you are a Tea Partier, Occupier, Christian, Muslim, Atheist, Smurf, or teen singing sensation, there is someone out there that would be more than willing to lock you up and throw away the key.
Keep fighting the good fight against SOPA, but don’t stop there, for every authoritarian law we defeat there are a thousand more waiting in the wings to be passed.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a game of Words With Friends to finish.Published in