While much of the nation is appalled by Edward Snowden’s revelation that the American government collects and scans millions of phone calls, emails and Internet searches each day, there is a bit of hypocrisy in the outrage. The public is outraged that Uncle Sam is accessing their personal phone or computer interactions, but they silently accept what, by logic, they ought to condemn — God’s snooping.
The main argument of those who protest has been invasion of privacy. A few voices dismiss the controversy with a simple observation, “If you’ve nothing to hide, where’s the problem? But few of us are that innocent.
Most of us aren’t concerned about doing a personal, secret search on the internet for a long lost love. Even our politicians, have felt secure with promoting marital infidelities in confidential emails, or cell phone calls.
But that doesn’t resolve the unspoken concern about the mining of our private messages and searches. If the government never intercepted a phone call or read an email, the real danger still exists. God hears your phone calls, reads your email and knows every google search you ever made.
Americans might logically base their right to privacy on the Fourth Amendment and its once-severe restrictions on governmental searches. Even with the extremes to which the Obama Administration has taken its right to search without a warrant, there is still a degree of privacy left for some of us.
God may have Ten Commandments but he has no Fourth Amendment. He can tap your phone at will, without penalty. No Internet search escapes him. You don’t demand that God get a warrant from a sympathetic judge before he hacks into your website or intercepts your email. With God, your phone is permanently tapped. The government may require a monumental storage facility out in Utah to keep all the records the Feds are collecting, but God can store it all — invisibly.
No one, however, has challenged God’s infringement on the basic human right of privacy. No one has charged God with exceeding his authority. No one has even tried to blame God’s action as simply following the policy of his predecessor.
The ACLU has already sued or will shortly sue NSA, CIA, FBI and the Justice Department.
But no one has sued God. Why not?
A suit to force various religious denominations to change their theology regarding the all-knowing nature of God might be in order here. But not even a publicity-seeking lawyer has proposed doing that.
The reason may very well be that deep down inside many Americans are closet agnostics or closet atheists. They really don’t think that God knows all. They don’t think he really cares.
If they did and were truly God-fearing people, they wouldn’t be searching the Internet for the phone number of that never forgotten college love partner they cared for sixty years ago. It isn’t God they fear when they make that call and hear “Hello” on the other end of the line, and it may not be that they fear what a spouse would think if the phone call is revealed. No, what is feared is that the answering party will say “Yes, that was me, but I don’t remember you!”
God isn’t in the equation, because they don’t think it really matters to God. Or they really aren’t convinced there is a God who might care.
So, if this is a God-fearing nation, as we are told repeatedly by members of both parties, stop the debate over data mining by the government. If we don’t object to God’s all-encompassing searches, even more efficient than that of the Feds, there’s no reason to quibble about snooping by government contractors like Edward Snowden.