I’d like a government that listens
More than listens in
And NO, I don’t want fries with that!
We need to truly listen to one another, in order to create together a democracy that represents us. Democracy is an open dialogue, not one-sided surveillance. Listening is not the same as listening in! State secrecy always poses a threat to true democracy. Secret state surveillance on its own citizens always poses a threat of privacy violations and abuse of power. State secrecy threatens the ability of we the people to hold our government accountable. In fact, state secrecy puts the power of government in somebody else’s hands — and who that is exactly is well…a secret!
The last line of the poem is a stab at the automatic rhetoric that is often employed by government and corporations in a reactionary manner to any request — always trying to up-sell you to some predetermined agenda. In the politics of state secrecy and spying, terms like “terrorism” and “way of life” are bandied about. In the politics of our everyday economy, the truth on the ground is “would you like fries with that?” When our government listens to us, it will actually answer our questions, not just spit back inane questions. May we continue to work to assure that this becomes a fuller reality each day.