“Be more careful on Facebook”

Something I’ve been saying to a few close friends and family members: given the current American Government, I’m going to avoid traveling to the US because I feel that I’m just vocal enough to be rejected at the border.

Here’s the short version of what I’m about to say:

Immigrants and visitors to the US—along with anyone participating in protests or visible resistance to the current administration—are the targets of intrusive governmental surveillance, including surveillance of their social networks. Both immigrants and political dissidents are being vilified by the administration and targeted for draconian and unconstitutional attacks. If your “friends”—or friends of friends—network includes people vulnerable to these attacks, you should assume that your constitutionally protected political speech may be used in bad faith to characterize your contacts as terrorists or criminals, and act accordingly.

Note: If this seems obvious to you, perhaps because you’ve already experienced some flavor of it, know that I wrote this post for your friends and family members and colleagues who haven’t thought about it yet.

(Emphasis mine)

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