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Cafe Society to discuss U.S. reaction to the terrorist threat

By Staff | Oct 2, 2015

The Cafe Society, a part of Shepherd University’s Lifelong Learning Program will hold its next discussion on Oct. 6. The focus will be on the issue: “Are we overreacting to the terrorist threat and thereby forfeiting critical civil liberties?” This weekly discussion will be held from 8:30 to 10 a.m. in the Rumsey Room of the Shepherd University Student Center, next Tuesday morning. Pre-registration is not required, and there are no fees or charges.

Mike Austin, who is one of the facilitators of the sessions, commented, “There is certainly room for argument that in our panic to respond to the ill-defined terrorist threats, we are giving up basic civil rights in order to defend our society. Having castigated the communist nations for many years for forcing a “big brother is watching” mentality on their own citizens, we now find ourselves doing virtually the same thing. Unable to pierce the veil of secrecy that masks what our intelligence community is doing, we are forced to rely on seriously discredited and inept congressional committees to preserve the most basic tenets of American Democracy. The critical checks and balances carefully designed as an essential constitutional safeguard are by-passed under the guise of “national security” imperatives driven by the disturbing axiom that “the end justifies the means.” At risk are previously protected constitutional rights of free speech, assembly and privacy.”

He provided the additional comment, saying, “This issue is as important as others such as immigration, gun control and taxation that are emerging in the current presidential campaign. We need to make an honest appraisal of what the billions of dollars spent on homeland security since 9/11 have produced in the way of protecting the American way of life.”

For additional information, contact Austin at 304-876-0598.