Right! I've been thinking lately about the state our county is in, and I'm going to lay some truth on you. LAY IT RIGHT ON YOUR FACE.
I will, for the purposes of this blog post, be citing my references.
Now, I'm not one of those people who think that everyone involved in government is inherently evil and wants to oppress me. I have a lot of faith in people; I just also think that large numbers of people in power can make colossally stupid decisions.
The UK is the world leader in CCTV use, with approximately 4.2 million cameras. ref That's about one every 15 people.
Nearly 4 million in the UK have their DNA permanently retained on the NDNAD (the National DNA Database); that's 5.2% of the country's population. Compare this to other countries; the second highest percentage of the population with DNA kept on record is Austria with 1%. ref
See, the thing is, they don't wait for formal charges to be made against you before they take your DNA, they do it the second they've got you. This has lead to black men being hugely overrepresented on the database; something that reflects far more on the bias in the police force than on crime statistics.
Another consequence is that the DNA of approximately 100,000 innocent children has been retained on the NDNAD. And once you're on there, it is really, really hard to get off. ref
See, the most convenient thing is if absolutely everyone has their DNA on there. Until very recently I wouldn't have seen anything wrong with this, and maybe you don't either, but this is something worth thinking about:
Do you trust the Government to look after your data? ref
Do they have a right to your DNA?
Are they taking it with your permission?
Sadly, the way things are going, it's looking like your permission isn't necessary for them to keep this information. They have been pushing for some time now for a national enforced ID scheme (ref) and have met with a lot of resistance, leading to them trying to sneak it in through teenagers or, worse, implanting subdermal chips in convicts. I've read the leaked government documents on the teenage ID cards, and it really does look like a poor disguise for introducing the system through a side door.
Again, these are all things that I would have once accepted. I can see the practicality in having an easy and conclusive form of ID, but the technology they intend to use is easily cloned, meaning that your identity can be stolen; and since your identity is that card, what can you do about it?
Furthermore, you KNOW how hard it is to get forms filled out properly. Scraping together enough valid identification for a passport was hard enough. I dread to think how many people might fall through the cracks of this system and become officially non-existent.
I think it's important to know your rights, and to fight for them. Everybody thinks that's important, of course, but maybe now's the time to do something about it.
Taken from the European Convention on Human Rights
- Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.
- There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.
- Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. this right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. This article shall not prevent States from requiring the licensing of broadcasting, television or cinema enterprises.
- The exercise of these freedoms, since it carries with it duties and responsibilities, may be subject to such formalities, conditions, restrictions or penalties as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society, in the interests of national security, territorial integrity or public safety, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, for the protection of the reputation or the rights of others, for preventing the disclosure of information received in confidence, or for maintaining the authority and impartiality of the judiciary.
Basically... I shouldn't be afraid of taking photos in public. I shouldn't be watched, every second of every day. There are a lot of people out there who know and care a lot more about this than I do, so if you're even vaguely interested in defending these liberties, please check out www.no2id.net.
"He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name." Revelation 13:16-17. Sorry if it's excessively superstitious to bring that up, but it seems worth mentioning.