I'm a kid, I identify myself as a kid in the circles I travel in because my mentality is one of youth.
It's not about childish things that I speak of, but of enthusiasm and drive and trying to succeed. Youth drives people, experience maintains them, some say that it's wasted on the young but I don't believe that, if we younguns had the experience to "know better" then we wouldn't have the drive to try in the first place.
When I talk to older people about my beliefs that civil liberties should not be compromised, that net neutrality is very important and that content piracy is a complex issue that shouldn't be resolved by outlawing it outright, my words come from my desire to use the things I know to succeed in life. My age group is fighting an uphill battle against a larger demographic of people – the babyboomers – who have dominated the world thus-far. Babyboomers already have the choice property, the best jobs, and the government authority. They still decide the course of the world that I live in. The odds are stacked against me to succeed.
So I use what tools I have at my disposal. I don't own property, I don't have power, I have some money, but money by it's self will not bring someone to succeed. My tool is information. Information is what has real value to me, it's what has value to everyone my age. Our strength is information and our knowledge of how to control it. This knowledge scares the powers that be, they see information as this indiscernible force that must be tightly controlled or it will get out of hand and consume them. In our modern age the average teenager can find out just as much about another country in an afternoon as it would have taken an intelligence agency a week to compile 30 years ago. And 30 years ago the people that run the country were in my shoes, pushing hard to succeed and get ahead in life.
So is it any wonder that they want to limit and control information? it's the weapon that will usurp their throne. So they weald great blunt instruments in the form of laws to fight this rising tide of information. Laws like the recent FISA amendment to grab all information and somehow intensely scrutinize it for the presence of evil. But we, the young, know this will not work. We know that "terrorists" (I hate that word, it's the most loaded catch word in the history of propaganda.) are not so retarded as to place a collect call to their pal at bombs-r-us in Ihateamericaistan to order their nuclear warheads. The government knows this too, but they don't have to admit it, because they have us from both sides. Those who trust them to do right by the people, and those who don't, know they can't do anything about it.
Those of us who understand how modern information and it's infrastructure work know that simply by existing it makes extremist activities on a massive scale intensely difficult. We as a people are watching, and we cry out loudly when we see something worthy of our attention. So why is it that the government here feels the need to outlaw the sharing of much of this information, or somehow mystically monitor ALL of it?
Those older than me believe that this information is a threat, they tell me as much. They tell me that America is at war and that just across the pond there is a nation full of religious extremists busily strapping dynamite to their chests and getting on a plane, and that we need to tap the phone line of everyone in the country in order to find out when that bomb guy is checking his baggage. I ask these people why they believe that the government should be trusted to only use this private information to "only find the bad guys"? They've proven over and over again that they can't be trusted. There are already impeachment proceedings going on because the current administration used the Justice department to prosecute people for political reasons. Not because they did anything wrong, but because it was expedient to use the system to send them to prison because they were annoying the powers that be. Yeah, they're only going to use telecom info to find the terrorists… riiiight.
While I'm busily using the new tools at my disposal to carve my niche out in life, the establishment sees my chipping as eroding the foundation they tried so hard to build. They want to take my tools away, or at least blunt the edges, maybe have them made out of foam so I don't hurt myself. But I know better, and I won't give them up without a fight.