The world wide mass outrage sparked by Lamar Smith’s (R-21) last attempt to silence the internet (SOPA), was, apparently, not enough.
Smith is back with a new bill, the Protecting Children From Internet Pornographers Act of 2011, which, despite its name, does little to combat the trade in child porn, but would require internet service providers to store virtually all customer information (IP addresses, search history, credit card data and bank account information) for up to 18 months. This data “would not be limited to investigations of child pornography, but would be available for law enforcement perusal for any issue, without probable cause.”
The Electronic Frontier Foundation said “This sweeping new “mandatory data retention” proposal treats every Internet user like a potential criminal and represents a clear and present danger to the online free speech and privacy rights of millions of innocent Americans.”
Rainey Reitman, the EFF’s activism director said, “this type of legislation goes against the fundamental values of our country where individuals are treated as innocent until proven guilty.”
Lamar Smith has proven, yet again, that he is an embarrassment to Texas, and a direct threat to the livelihood of thousands of Texans who live within his district and earn their living online.
Thankfully, for the first time in memory, there are Democratic candidates (Elaine Henderson and Candace Duval) running against Smith. We must get rid of this menace who wants to silence all free speech online.