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Diedrick Snoek: 'Sacred' Bill of Rights worth defending

To the editor:

I want to voice high praise for the editorial “Government’s big ear” in the June 24 paper. You raise important questions about our government’s surveillance of our private communications and you do so in a balanced way.

I am not sure that you are correct to assume that public silence means that many of us acquiesce in these practices. Despite the president’s assurances and the apparent readiness to defend the practices by such figures as Sen. Dianne Feinstein and former Speaker Nancy Pelosi, I hear of many who have great misgivings. Having lived through the Nixon administration, can you imagine the potential for abuse of such unchecked powers?

The Fourth Amendment is unmistakably clear that “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.” It is a fact that we all fear those fanatics who are willing to fly a hijacked airliner into a skyscraper, but I consider our Bill of Rights sacred and worth defending even in these difficult times.

Diedrick Snoek

Easthampton

There are 10 Amendments that make up the Bill of Rights. While I agree with your desire to protect the 4th, we should never believe that we can pick and choose which of the 10 to support while sacrificing other Amendments. Once one is gone, it's only a matter of time before the others get whittled away.

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