Mainstream Press Seems To Think Fighting For Civil Liberties Is Childish

by Mike Masnick
Dec. 01, 2010

We've already pointed out how many mainstream newspapers and magazines have been mocking the concerns of people who are upset by the TSA's new search procedures. And, of course, the latest is that the press has decided this story is over because not enough people (in their estimation) opted out of the naked scans last week. NYU professor Jay Rosen notes a related, but disturbing, trend in the mainstream press coverage, with multiple publications suggesting that it was somehow childish to suggest these machines invade privacy with little actual security benefit. The common theme in all of these reports? "Grow up."

I find this incredibly disturbing. No, perhaps, being scanned or felt up in this manner isn't a huge deal to some people, but is it really so crazy that some people are actually concerned about their civil rights? That some people are actually concerned about the efficacy of these scanners? That some people are actually concerned about where this leads to next? That doesn't strike me as being childish or immature. It strikes me as exactly the opposite: it's about adults recognizing that rights are being eroded and that it's happening with little evidence that the reasons given make much sense. Simply giving in and submitting to authority because of some bogeyman claims certainly seems a lot more childish than asking "why"?

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