UN declares Internet access a "human right"

JC Dill jcdill.lists at gmail.com
Mon Jun 6 15:15:17 UTC 2011

  On 06/06/11 6:42 AM, Valdis.Kletnieks at vt.edu wrote:
> On Sun, 05 Jun 2011 22:40:57 PDT, JC Dill said:
>> I will happily go along with this argument when the "3 strikes you're
>> off" copyright laws are enforced thru a process which A) assumes you are
>> innocent until proven guilty; B) that you are allowed to present a
>> defense and challenge all witnesses; and C) that you are entitled to
>> have your case heard by a jury of your peers.  To the best of my
>> knowledge, none of the "3 strikes you're off" copyright laws proposed or
>> enacted have provided these basic human rights.
> You missed the '</snark>' at the end, didn't you? :)
No, I didn't miss it.  It wasn't clear what part you were snarking at.  
Some people DO make that argument, and I wanted to point out why it was 
faulty logic.

The bigger point is how our basic human rights are being eroded by 
corporations and governments on a daily basis.  People willingly submit 
to "exit checks" at stores, being treated like potential shoplifters 
because they think they HAVE to submit.  (The only store where you have 
to submit to an exit check is a membership store where agreeing to this 
policy is part of your membership agreement.  Unless the store has 
reason to suspect you are shoplifting, they can't block or detain you if 
you want to bypass the exit check and leave with your paid purchases.  
If they try to stop you when they have no evidence of shoplifting, you 
can sue for false arrest.)

I joined a gym more than a year ago, with a pre-paid 24 month 
membership.  Recently they put in a finger scanner, and it's "optional" 
to enroll to have your fingerprint scanned and then the data points 
stored in their computer.  Then you scan your finger and enter a pin 
number.  I choose to not opt-in to this optional system.  Last night, I 
attempted to work out by presenting my membership card and a photocopy 
of my license.  This was the acceptable method when I enrolled (they 
photocopied my license and put it in a plastic card holder along with 
the membership card).  But now they want to see the actual physical 
driver's license every time I work out.

I find this intrusive, and a violation of my contract for 24 months of 
gym membership because when I enrolled there was no requirement to show 
my driver's license every time I worked out - I showed it on joining and 
then THEY said a photocopy was sufficient for future visits.  But 
there's no way to win this fight.  It's not worth trying to get 
corporate to change their policy, they won't actually change their 
policy no matter what I do.  All it will do is cause me more angst.  So 
I have to either deal with the inconvenience (and risk of 
losing/misplacing my license) by bringing in my license (and thus my 
wallet) into the gym when I want to work out, or I have to submit to 
having my fingerprint put into their database.  So much for my right to 
"opt-out" of this "optional" scanner system.  It's a right, but they 
have made it so difficult and inconvenient to use the alternate method 
that my right doesn't *really* exist.

And let's not forget TSA.

These small incremental incidents are how rights are eroded, how people 
get brainwashed into believing that they must submit to these intrusions.

"Show us your papers" is not far behind.


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