I'll Get This Out Before SOPA Censors It
SOPA, Stop Online Piracy Act, is being hated on by everyone, and with good reason. The act aims to tackle online piracy by giving the US Justice Department new powers to go after websites, both domestically and abroad, that host disputed copyright material. Also, it would allow the US to effectively pull the plug on websites and go after companies that support them technically or through payment systems. It essentially creates an internet blacklist.
I'm really surprised that members of Congress, that look like they have no idea what the internet is, were able to come up with an act like this. Then I remember who the supporters of this act are—the Directors Guild of America, the Screen Actors Guild, the Motion Picture Association, and drug companies, among others.
SOPA could be a terrible thing for freedom of speech and creativity on the internet by companies. Internet censorship is a slippery slope, and as leaders of free expression on the internet, what kind of message is it sending to the rest of the world?
Here is a list of some of the Congressmen and women that was posted on Reddit with this picture. My commentary follows.
Lamar Smith (R-TX): A graduate from Yale and Southern Methodist University, he's managed a family ranch before going into public office. I'm assuming he started the Stop Online Piracy Act because someone shared his family secret on cattle herding on the internet, or he wants to blacklist any site that talks about evolution. A salute to Texas! I guess the internet is the one thing that Texas doesn't want to be bigger.
John Conyers (D-MI): I'm going to be honest, I misread this as John Connor. I thought that he was for the act because the internet was becoming self-aware and was going to rise up to crush all of humankind. Alas, it is not John Connor. It's just another aging politician that has outdated views that can't keep up with the technological horizon.
Bob Goodlatte (R-VA): Before rising to the need of the people, Bob Goodlatte was a Starbucks barista because he made a damn good latte (cwutididthere?). When he's not trying to blacklist sites with social expression, he's perfecting the art of steamed milk and caffeine. With his rosy cheeks and “dad from Footloose” haircut, I never would've guessed that he would be behind a bill that censors the internet. Take that you kids that dance to music!
Tim Griffin (R-AR): I was going to say some funny things about him, but he is a 14 year Army vet, so I'm rethinking what I say because as nice of a family man as he appears to be, I bet he could kick my butt. So I'll leave it at this—related to Peter Griffin?
Elton Gallegly (R-CA): So Elton Gall...Galleg... Gallego... Galagaga... however you say it. You know what? If Mr. Gagoogelly can sing Tiny Dancer, then I'll forgive him of his mistake of supporting this bill.
Theordore E. Deutch
Theodore E. Deutch (D-FL): Look at the last name and tell me the first thing you think of. That's right—douche. I was expecting a large man with a rotund midsection and a Civil War mustache; then I looked him up on the INTERNET and saw that he's just a man that's all forehead and two front teeth that would make the tooth fairy orgasm. And he goes by Ted.
Marsha Blackburn (R-TN): MARSHA, MARSHA, MARSHA! On her website, it says in her biography that she has dedicated her service to making America a better and freer place. She says nothing about the Internet. What really disturbs me about her is that her website has a section called “Kid's Corner.” In that section, there is a link for CIA's Homepage for Kids: Learn what it takes to be a spy, read about the history of the CIA and try on spy disguises. US Congressman? Or CIA propaganda agent?! Trying to turn our youth into spies. Agent 47 would like to have a talk with you.
Lee Terry (R-NE): Never before have I found a person with two first names and two last names. This might be the most flexible man in America. He currently serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, but I guess he's got that solved because he's turning toward the fight on internet piracy and censorship. In his website biography, it states, “we should decrease our reliance on foreign sources of energy and take advantage of what is here: countless opportunities for backyard-sourced American energy. If we fully utilize our country's resources of coal, petroleum, natural gas and better develop our wind, hydroelectric, solar, and nuclear power production, it will create millions of American jobs, and establish uninterrupted and reasonably-priced power for all our country's fifty states.” Well sir, mission accomplished. YouTube—you're next!
John Carter (R-TX): of Mars?! Like, the sci-fi book? The one that is being made into a movie (a freakin' sweet-looking movie) with Taylor Kitsch playing John Carter? That John Carter?!!! I guess he's won the battle on Mars and has come back to Earth to win the battle of the internet. Lucky us!
Peter King (R-NY): I like his brother Stephen better.
Tom Marino (R-PA): Nowhere near the football ability as Dan Marino, yet has the same number of Super Bowl rings. Taken directly from his site's homepage, he says in a thank you message to his supporters “I look forward to taking my common-sense conservative message of lower taxes, smaller government, and repealing […]” blah, blah, blah. Smaller government, huh? Maybe be careful what you put your name on next time. I wouldn't want any conflicted messages to get out there.
Overall, this A-Team of Internet Security is here to save the day. There's no site too big or too small for them. They will scour the open seas of the internet and look for the pirates and their digital blunderbusses. It's great to see Congress tackling the right issue in the wrong way. Very reassuring. This is way more important than other issues our country faces. This is right up there with Roger Clemens, and video games ratings, and Barry Bonds perjury, and steroids. Maybe they're just mad that all of their sites look like sh*t.
You can follow Lance Liebl on Twitter (hopefully it isn't blacklisted yet) @Lance_GZ