If passed, this Texas bill will cut power to the local NSA surveillance facility.
The National Security Agency opened facilities in Texas and several other states after it's Maryland headquarters maxed out the local Baltimore power grid. The NSA's expansion has angered American citizens across the nation and empowered them to fight the agency on their own, like Texas Republican representative Jonathan Strickland, and Michael Boldin, founder of OffNow and The Tenth Amendment Center.
Last month, Strickland introduced Texas House Bill 3916 (HB3916) to ban any political subdivision in the state from providing water or electricity to any federal agency involved in the routine surveillance and collection of bulk telephone, e-mail, or related records of any U.S. citizen. The move was part of Michael Boldin's OffNow movement, which encourages people to create an environment that makes it politically and logistically impossible for the NSA to continue illegal surveillance programs on a state level. OffNow's plan is to deprive these agencies of the resources they need to operate by:
- Banning material support. This includes stopping the flow of state supplied resources like water and electricity to federal agencies conducting mass, warrantless surveillance. See video below.
- Prohibiting warrantless data sharing. In the Bush-era, the federal government enacted numerous laws largely turning state and local law enforcement agents into warrantless data transmitters for the national surveillance state, primarily via SOD and Fusion Centers. OffNow works to pass laws via ballot measures and regular legislation to prohibit such activities.
- Ending warrantless location tracking. Through the use of "Stingrays" and other similar tools, federal and local agencies illegally collect location information from your cellphone. Once collected, these agencies share this information back and forth. Police at the local level also use license-plate readers as tracking devices.OffNow supports legislation to restrict and eventually eliminate these practices.
- Stopping warrantless drone spying. Drones can serve as valuable tools, but in the hands of law enforcement, they can quickly become a tool of abuse. OffNow works to support legislation restricting or eliminating the use of drones by state and local entities.
OffNow has already succeeded in getting legislation circulating in many states like the ones highlighted below.
If Strickland's Texas HB3916 officially passes, it will turn off water and electric service to the massive Texas Cryptologic Center in San Antonio. Without these power grids, the NSA facility will experience disrupted operations, power surges, and outages.
According to the Tenth Amendment Center, the bill has a strong foundation.
"HB3916 rests on a rock-solid legal doctrine. The Supreme Court has repeatedly upheld the principle that the states cannot be required to supply resources or manpower to help the federal government carry out its acts or programs. Known as the anti-commandeering doctrine, the legal principle rests primarily on four Supreme Court opinions dating back to 1842. In Prigg v. Pennsylvania(1842), Justice Joseph Story held that the federal government could not force states to implement or carry out the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793. He said that it was a federal law, and the federal government ultimately had to enforce it."
To take action or see whether your state has similar legislation, click here.
Protect your right to privacy, because as we explain in the video below, the FBI wants to take away the last of your privacy protections. Don't let them.
-By Brigida Santos, The Off the Grid Team
The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of Ora Media, LLC its affiliates, or its employees.
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