Tuesday, December 20, 2011

An Open Letter To My Representative Regarding SOPA

I have no doubt that by now you have received numerous messages in regard to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), and I find that as a citizen and as a voter, I must add my self to that chorus.

I cannot overstate the importance of the Internet, not simply to business or to the citizens of our country, but to all the people of the world. What we have built in these few decades is among the greatest achievements in human history. Free communication and information for the entire world.

In every place that humans have gained access, their lives have been improved through information and education. When all information is equal, truth must prevail, and when human beings can communicate, they can not be suppressed. We have seen the truth of this in recent years, as regimes and dictatorships have fallen to unified peoples. Like the airplane and the radio, this invention has brought us closer together, and by it's very nature cries out to the goodness in men and women.

The Internet has created a paradigm shift in the way that we as human beings relate to one another; it has created a world in which a child can have friends all across the world, unbound by the limitations of geography, or the artificial divisions of politics. It has created a world where people of one nation can hear the words and thoughts of all others, unfiltered by outside interests. And it is the tool by which we will build a better world, free of the bigotries that have plagued all of our societies throughout history. Because it is easy to hate a stranger, but it is very hard to make a man hate his neighbor, whom he has spoken with and knows to be as good a man as himself.

The Internet is among the greatest inventions of human history, and the greatest tools we have in building a new and better future for our species. Attacking it in order to stave off the obsolescence of the copy-write industry would be a betrayal against not merely the will of the voting public, or the interests of America, but against the common good of the Human Species it's self.

Others have explained better than I could the detrimental effect that this bill would have on people individually, as well as on businesses that rely on the Internet, so I do not presume it necessary to repeat them. I cannot overstate however that this bill and those like it threaten far more than such immediate concerns.

I can only hope at this late hour that someone on your staff reads this letter, and conveys it to you. Please do not allow the horse & buggy industry to kill the automobile.