Hello, big government

Dear Editor:
We have a “BIG BROTHER” video surveillance cam on the roof of our jail and this camera is watching all of us on the courthouse lawn in downtown Meeker.
The question is: Do we really want law enforcement watching us and recording what we do in our town square, our parks, our concerts, our parades and city streets?  The answer is: “NO.” Can we afford more law enforcement tools/toys/programs? The answer is:  “NO.” The taxpayer is broke and families are unemployed.
We need to post a few public signs as follows: (1) On our new clock tower — “Attention — This area is under police surveillance 24/7 for your protection — be safe,” (2) On the doors of our retail stores — “Attention: this downtown area is under police surveillance 24/7 —  feel safe.” (3) On a sign on Highway 13 leading into Meeker — “WELCOME — the town of Meeker is under police video surveillance 24/7 — you are safe.”
The next time you steal a kiss or hug from your lover under the clock tower — look up, there is a peeping tom up on the roof top.
The next time your dog finds a light pole on the courthouse lawn — look up, you are busted!
The next time your teenager fails to signal at the intersection — look up, you will need to increase your child’s weekly allowance.
The next time you sip a little wine at the summer concerts, look up, you had better use a cup or a paper sack.
The next time you want to picket the courthouse — look up, and a smile, you are on candid courthouse camera.
Every government in the world knows that if you want to keep citizens “in check,” you put them under police surveillance!  We do not need to spend money to put our public areas under government control.   This process degrades the charm of a small town and offends our right to privacy and freedom.  Further we are teaching our children to behave like sheep under cameras.  I want to see our teenagers engaged in horseplay in the lighted public area of our downtown. Does anyone believe that teenagers will hang out under these invasive cameras?
Hello, Big Government. That big finger that you see on your courthouse camera screen is a “thumbs down.”  Some Americans still believe that it is just rude to point secret cameras at other Americans.
Joe Fennessy
Rio Blanco County

Dear Editor:We have a “BIG BROTHER” video surveillance cam on the roof of our jail and this camera is watching all of us on the courthouse lawn in downtown Meeker.  www.co.rio-blanco.co.us  The question is: Do we really want law enforcement watching us and recording what we do in our town square, our parks, our concerts, our parades and city streets?  The answer is: “NO.” Can we afford more law enforcement tools/toys/programs? The answer is:  “NO.” The taxpayer is broke and families are unemployed.We need to post a few public signs as follows: (1) On our new clock tower — “Attention — This area is under police surveillance 24/7 for your protection — be safe,” (2) On the doors of our retail stores — “Attention: this downtown area is under police surveillance 24/7 —  feel safe.” (3) On a sign on Highway 13 leading into Meeker — “WELCOME — the town of Meeker is under police video surveillance 24/7 — you are safe.”The next time you steal a kiss or hug from your lover under the clock tower — look up, there is a peeping tom up on the roof top.The next time your dog finds a light pole on the courthouse lawn — look up, you are busted!The next time your teenager fails to signal at the intersection — look up, you will need to increase your child’s weekly allowance.The next time you sip a little wine at the summer concerts, look up, you had better use a cup or a paper sack.The next time you want to picket the courthouse — look up, and a smile, you are on candid courthouse camera.Every government in the world knows that if you want to keep citizens “in check,” you put them under police surveillance!  We do not need to spend money to put our public areas under government control.   This process degrades the charm of a small town and offends our right to privacy and freedom.  Further we are teaching our children to behave like sheep under cameras.  I want to see our teenagers engaged in horseplay in the lighted public area of our downtown. Does anyone believe that teenagers will hang out under these invasive cameras?Hello, Big Government. That big finger that you see on your courthouse camera screen is a “thumbs down.”  Some Americans still believe that it is just rude to point secret cameras at other Americans.Joe FennessyRio Blanco County

3 Comments

  1. Where to began, first of all about the only facts you got correct in your letter is, yes, there is a camera on the courthouse roof that is streaming video to the public. And yes it is being archived as are all the network cameras. the rest was complete rhetoric and untruthful due to your lack of facts. Next time you want to right a letter to anyone I strongly suggest you do some research before you put pen to paper.

    In my humble opinion, I believe you to be a true conspiracy theory kind of guy, what’s next, a letter telling us all not to get flu shots or vaccinate our children?

    The truth is a camera has been there for more then five years! Have they invaded yours, or anyone you know, privacy. Will the last person who was ticketed, or arrested as a result of the camera please stand up?

  2. I would like to leave a positive response to the webcam overlooking the corner of 6th & Main and part of the courthouse lawn. I have sent a link to family and friends so they can “come home” periodically. Our kids and grandkids live in Kansas City, as far away as Oz it seems. The grandbabies keep looking for Grandma and Grandpa – we will, of course, be making that happen. I shared our recent beautiful spring snow with a good friend down in Phoenix, where it has all ready hit 90. She thought it was “so COOL”. All of these people have spent time here and love it here (many would move here if they could).

    I certainly share Joe Fennessey’s alarming response regarding Big Brother watching us, but the camera is pointed at only the southwest corner of the Courthouse lawn and the intersection of 6th & Main. I have watched the camera and have found the following: not much happens and it is difficult to make out details of individuals or vehicles. The camera does not zoom nor does it move. Once the trees have bloomed, the view of the courthouse lawn will nearly disappear, although I believe the corner will still be visible. Personally I don’t really care if someone is smooching under the clock tower, but as a taxpayer I certainly do care if that same clock tower is being vandalized. It is my understanding that there has been a camera covering the courthouse lawn for many years; put in at a time when the flower containers out front were being vandalized. The back parking lot is completely covered by live feed video; as are many areas within the courthouse. There are live webcams on college campuses and along every highway. You are videoed every time you walk in a store or a bank. I would encourage people to check out the webcam at http://www.co.rio-blanco.co.us. As Marie Curie once said, “Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.”

    Additional positive aspects to this camera: For those people who are unable to attend the 4th of July Parade or the Bank Robbery reenactment, this gives them a possible way to do so; for those who live out of town it can give them some idea what the weather is here and be able to make better travel plans. It’s a view of home for those who live far away. And I would think the businesses on that corner, who now have their front doors covered by not just law enforcement but people around the world, would like the webcam as both a security device as well as perhaps a marketing device.

    Although we must be vigilant with our privacy, we need to make sure we’re not seeing wolves at every door. And as sensible, reasonable people we need to be careful what we get hysterical about. When they want to start putting webcams in our residential areas, we can be alarmed.

  3. The camera does not provide much detail at all, and by no means invades privacy. In this age of technology, people are under surveillance all of the time. Walk into most gas stations, public buildings and get out of your car in a parking lot and be assured you are on camera the majority of the time. Like public places, private residences are equipped with security cameras and “nanny-cams”; however, when you visit do they have signs up telling you that you are being watched? Some, yes and most, no.
    Be careful to cry “big brother” is invading privacy, as a time will come when requesting copies of the footage captured will be necessary when a true crime has been committed.
    After all, if you are not doing anything illegal, unjust or unscrupulous, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about, right?

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