Senators Have Re-Introduced the Highly Unpopular EARN IT Bill That Would Scan All Online Messages

Yves here. David L brought this revival of an assault on our limited online privacy to our attention. The EARN IT was beaten back in the early 2000s. But with so much press focus now on the outrages du jour like the, ahem, imminent Russian attack on Ukraine, upsets over the Olympics, rows over Covid and Covid policy, and the continued existence of Trump, it’s far too easy for the revived EARN IT bill to not get the vociferous opposition it deserves.

The short version is that EARN IT would create a vast private surveillance network….as if the NSA wasn’t already doing a good enough job of communications hoovering. The Electronic Frontier Foundation argues it is also a pretext to break end-to-end encryption, using the pretext of stopping child porn.

Aside from the usual suspects, this attack on online communications might also find some odd bedfellows opponents. For instance, of all places, Alabama does not allow medical records to be sent via e-mail unless it is encrypted (and no, this is not a HIPAA requirement, in fact HIPAA, despite common misunderstandings otherwise, requires that patients be sent their own records via e-mail upon demand). I strongly suspect that the Alabama law was designed to enrich some good old boy provider of encrypted e-mail serviced for medical providers. And in fact most MDs and even hospitals opt out by using (gah) faxes instead. But one can anticipate that whoever was behind this Alabama requirement won’t be happy about EARN IT.

Please do take the time to call or e-mail your Congresscritters (if calling, be sure to call the in-state, not the DC office). In earlier privacy fights, grass roots opposition carried the day. Here, by contrast, the apparent narrower base of support for this heinous bill could produce a dangerous sense of complacency.

By Joe Mullin, a policy analyst at the  Electronic Frontier Foundation, where he works on encryption, platform liability, patents, copyright, and free expression online. Cross posted from Common Dreams

People don’t want outsiders reading their private messages—not their physical mail, not their texts, not their DMs, nothing. It’s a clear and obvious point, but one place it doesn’t seem to have reached is the U.S. Senate.

A group of lawmakers led by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) have re-introduced the EARN IT Act, an incredibly unpopular bill from 2020 that was dropped in the face of overwhelming opposition. Let’s be clear: the new EARN IT Act would pave the way for a massive new surveillance system, run by private companies, that would roll back some of the most important privacy and security features in technology used by people around the globe. It’s a framework for private actors to scan every message sent online and report violations to law enforcement. And it might not stop there. The EARN IT Act could ensure that anything hosted online—backups, websites, cloud photos, and more—is scanned.

New Internet Rules, From Juneau to Jackson

The bill empowers every U.S. state or territory to create sweeping new Internet regulations, by stripping away the critical legal protections for websites and apps that currently prevent such a free-for-all—specifically, Section 230. The states will be allowed to pass whatever type of law they want to hold private companies liable, as long as they somehow relate their new rules to online child abuse.

The goal is to get states to pass laws that will punish companies when they deploy end-to-end encryption, or offer other encrypted services. This includes messaging services like WhatsApp, Signal, and iMessage, as well as web hosts like Amazon Web Services. We know that EARN IT aims to spread the use of tools to scan against law enforcement databases because the bill’s sponsors have said so. In a “Myths and Facts” document distributed by the bill’s proponents, it even names the government-approved software that they could mandate (PhotoDNA, a Microsoft program with an API that reports directly to law enforcement databases).

The document also attacks Amazon for not scanning enough of its content. Since Amazon is the home of Amazon Web Services, host of a huge number of websites, that implies the bill’s aim is to ensure that anything hosted online gets scanned.

Separately, the bill creates a 19-person federal commission, dominated by law enforcement agencies, which will lay out voluntary “best practices” for attacking the problem of online child abuse. Regardless of whether state legislatures take their lead from that commission, or from the bill’s sponsors themselves, we know where the road will end. Online service providers, even the smallest ones, will be compelled to scan user content, with government-approved software like PhotoDNA. If EARN IT supporters succeed in getting large platforms like Cloudflare and Amazon Web Services to scan, they might not even need to compel smaller websites—the government will already have access to the user data, through the platform.

A provision of the bill that purports to protect services using encryption (Section 5, Page 16) doesn’t come close to getting the job done. State prosecutors or private attorneys would be able to drag an online service provider into court over accusations that their users committed crimes, then use the fact that the service chose to use encryption as evidence against them—a strategy that’s specifically allowed under EARN IT.

It’s hard to imagine anyone daring to use this supposed defense of encryption. Instead, they’ll simply do what the bill sponsors are demanding—break end-to-end encryption and use the government-approved scanning software. Just as bad, providers of services like backup and cloud storage who don’t currently offer user-controlled encryption are even less likely to protect their users by introducing new security features, because they will risk liability under EARN IT.

A Lot of Scanning, Not A Lot of Protection

Senators supporting the EARN IT Act say they need new tools to prosecute cases over child sexual abuse material, or CSAM. But the methods proposed by EARN IT take aim at the security and privacy of everything hosted on the Internet.

Possessing, viewing, or distributing CSAM is already written into law as an extremely serious crime, with a broad framework of existing laws seeking to eradicate it. Online service providers that have actual knowledge of an apparent or imminent violation of current laws around CSAM are required to make a report to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), a government entity which forwards reports to law enforcement agencies.

Section 230 already does not protect online service providers from prosecutions over CSAM—in fact, it doesn’t protect online services from prosecution under any federal criminal law at all.

Internet companies are already required to report suspected CSAM if they come across it, and they report on a massive scale. That scale already comes with a lot of mistakes. In particular, new scanning techniques used by Facebook have produced many millions of reports to law enforcement, most of them apparently inaccurate. Federal law enforcement has used the massive number of reports produced by this low-quality scanning to suggest there has been a huge uptick in CSAM images. Then, armed with misleading statistics, the same law enforcement groups make new demands to break encryption or, as with EARN IT, hold companies liable if they don’t scan user content.

Independent child protection experts aren’t asking for systems to read everyone’s private messages. Rather, they recognize that children—particularly children who might be abused or exploited—need encrypted and private messaging just as much as, if not more than, the rest of us. No one, including the most vulnerable among us, can have privacy or security online without strong encryption.

Senate to U.S. Public: Can We Please Have a Surveillance State Now?

In their “Myths and Facts” sheet, the bill’s supporters have said the quiet part out loud. Some of the document’s falsehoods are breathtaking, such as the statement that internet businesses are provided “blanket and unqualified immunity for sexual crimes against children.” It (falsely) reassures small business owners who dare to have websites that the government-ordered scanning they will be subject to will come “without hindering their operations or creating significant costs.” And it says that using automated tools that submit images and videos to law enforcement databases is “not at odds with preserving online privacy.”

The Senators supporting the bill have said that their mass surveillance plans are somehow magically compatible with end-to-end encryption. That’s completely false, no matter whether it’s called “client side scanning” or another misleading new phrase.

The EARN IT Act doesn’t target Big Tech. It targets every individual internet user, treating us all as potential criminals who deserve to have every single message, photograph, and document scanned and checked against a government database. Since direct government surveillance would be blatantly unconstitutional and provoke public outrage, EARN IT uses tech companies—from the largest ones to the very smallest ones—as its tools.

The strategy is to get private companies to do the dirty work of mass surveillance. This is the same tactic that the U.S. government used last year, when law enforcement agencies tried to convince Apple to subvert its own encryption and scan users’ photos for them. (That plan has stalled out after overwhelming opposition.) It’s the same strategy that U.K. law enforcement is using to convince the British public to give up its privacy, having spent public money on a laughable publicity campaign that demonizes companies that use encryption.

We won’t waver in our support for privacy and security for all, and the encryption tools that support those values. This bill may be voted on by the Senate Judiciary Committee in just a few days. We’ve told the U.S. Senate that we will not back down in our opposition to EARN IT. We need you to speak up as well.

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  1. GWJones

    Not to be reductive, but we won’t get universal healthcare under American capitalism- just another reason to work for its replacement.

  2. LawnDart

    The children are lucky to have big brothers Blumenthal and Graham looking out for them– I love those guys!

    [NSA, please keep comment on file in case any question of my loyality arises, thanks]

    1. TimH

      There’s a good reason that Google et al won’t want this. It guarantees no USA:Europe data flow is legal for anything but purchases etc where the flow has to happen, because GDPR.

      1. Oh

        Au contraire, Google would be thrilled upon passage of the law – they’ll have access to additional private messages, e-mail and photos that are not currently being pirated from their apps. They’ll be delighted to sell this info. I wonder if Google’s the one promoting this bill because they’re the biggest scrapers and sellers of private information!

        They may already have a workaround on GDPR. Just saying..

  3. John

    Are they compos mentis? How will they manage to exclude their email like they exempt themselves from so many other intrusions? Those within the DC bubble must not trust us.

  4. Arizona Slim

    Here’s my idea of a protest: A day in which we all send text and emails with words that would make this scanning system go nuts. Let’s bring the system to its knees by using free speech!

    1. RA

      Best solution would be to once again defeat this way-big-brother overreaching legislation.

      If it did pass, here’s my first thought.

      All of us who are aware should get one or more of the encryption software packages that are capable of encrypting files with a few selectable strong encryption algorithms. Then encrypt lots of random stuff: pics, random selections from documents, music, generated random data noise, etc. Then send these files often via email or text to lots of people you know. Perhaps also to public places that you select randomly.

      It doesn’t matter if the recipient can decode it or not.

      Possibly some organization has the ability to break some of these codes but if the encryption is strong it should require a lot of processing power to do that. If many of us keep doing this a lot, the din of random data should overload their ability to find anything of interest.

      Occasionally you might send a meaningful encrypted message to someone who knows how to decrypt it. Often that could be a simple basic communication that doesn’t really have a reason to be encrypted, but why not do it anyway.

      A pain for a lot of people to keep doing this but the best way I can think of to stomp on their surveillance.

      1. Skip Intro

        You may be making it too easy. If you send completely random data, they would never be able to decrypt it, nor would they know that it couldn’t be decrypted. Zip it for good measure. If you did want to communicate secretly with someone, it would be good to agree on a ‘one time pad’ in advance.

      1. Mikel

        Those haiku, random phrases populate comments sections on YouTube. Videos on various subjects, music videos, docs, you name it, you’ll see these phrases popping up from people. Always wondered what that was about.

        1. truly

          Another fun idea to do with that list of forbidden words:
          Make a list of any and all forbidden words. Make that list part of your signature line in emails. Make your signature line appear in white. This makes it disappear to the human eye. But it still exists and would add to the din of the mass of data to be sorted thru. Sending these invisible messages along with funny content that would get forwarded over and over passing it on into infinity.
          Maybe that’s why conservatives were such prolific forwarders of email 20 years ago?

    2. Skk

      That brings back memories. In the late 80s in response to concerns that intracompany emails, yes emails in 80s, were being read by nefarious authorities like the NSA, my telecoms buddy based on the East coast and I, in the UK set up an automated email exchange for 24 hours , consisting of these type of trigger words to see if we could detect timing , routing anomalies. Nope, we couldn’t detect anything. But of course you can’t prove a negative.
      Innocent times ! We never worried about what might happen to us, even with the brouhaha over Peter Wright, of Spycatcher fame, the banned book , and of Paul Foots Who Framed Colin Wallace book.
      Now .. we have Julian Assange, Murray, Greenwald. It would make me pause for sure before doing something like that again.

      1. Noone from Nowheresville

        All you need to do is install a packet scanner and copy all the data as it goes through the router. Or apply filters to capture less data.

        Data which needs to be decrypted can be copied to special servers dedicated to breaking the encryption. Maybe they break the encryption, maybe they don’t. The stuff they can’t break (at the moment) would certainly be tracked and given a high priority.

        1. skk

          I’m out of it all now, but that sort of interception/filtering would have affected timing – so our experiments demonstrated. We aren’t talking of modern day stuff but the times of X.25, DECNet, SNA and so on.

          1. Noone from Nowheresville

            You’re right.

            Modern day is an entirely different ballgame. We’ll have to send out the Westeros Ravens (riffing one the carrier pigeon reference below). Of course those can be intercepted as well.

      2. GF

        The bill needs to make sure that all local, county, state and federal elected, hired and appointed personal, including senators and house members, and their staffs’ online and phone, personal and work related data, are included in the skimming.

        1. expr

          My idea was an amendment which requires each congress person/senators email, phone conversations and and entire contents of any computing device they own to be publicly viewable in a searchable website along with that of all family members (can’t have papa/momma using baby’s account for child porn)

      1. TimH

        Evidence found illegally has to be parallel reconstructed. Saves the bother. Also, there’s more limited recourse if private companies are doing it.

    1. Mikel

      It’s not about what law enforcement, govt, or corp. can already do, it’s about setting the precedent for the next step.

      I’m thinking this more about databases and who has access to the databases more so than the surveillance and encryption or fighting child porn.

      As that access is expanded beyond law enforcement, it is going through a legal framework to establish rules for commodification and the legal system for its ability to enforce contracts.

  5. LawnDart

    A possibly related topic came up a few days ago in relation to Trans Secretary Mayo Pete– “speed” cameras:

    Now, are traffic violations being used as a pretext to line our roadways with cameras? Could these cameras be linked to a system of vehicle tracking or subject identification?

    Seems the G is pretty interested in what we say, who we say it to, and our whereabouts these days. So what are they trying to hide?

    1. Questa Nota

      Social credit score, although it needs some snappy new Federally-approved name and acronym.
      Is it too late to propose Social Hygiene Internet Tourniquet?
      Maybe Blumenfraud and Miss Lindsey can propose a commission to study and report back.

    2. cnchal

      The greedheads that provide the nooses have invested money into lobbying and buying politicians.

      Somehow, Pete Buttitchitch thinks memories don’t exist.

      “Almost 95 percent of our Nation’s transportation deaths occur on America’s streets, roads, and highways, and they are on the rise,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in the National Roadway Safety Strategy release. “An estimated 38,680 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2020. In the first half of 2021, an estimated 20,160 people died, up 18.4 percent compared to the first six months of 2020.”

      What happened in the first six months of 2020 that we are expected to not remember? Oh yea, lock downs, empty streets and reports of fewer accidents.

      “Speeding increases both the frequency and severity of crashes, yet it is both persistent and largely accepted as the norm amongst the traveling public,” according to the Transportation Department’s National Roadway Safety Strategy. “Automated speed enforcement, if deployed equitably and applied appropriately to roads with the greatest risk of harm due to speeding, can provide significant safety benefits and save lives.”

      Ever see a road, four lanes wide with nothing on either side and a 30 MPH speed limit? The moar cameras the better, from the camera pushers perspective. There is no chance it will be applied equitably and appropriately. Those are bureaucrat weasel words

      Every day I thank my lucky stars I never had children.

  6. WobblyTelomeres

    “The goal is to get states to pass laws that will punish companies when they deploy end-to-end encryption”

    Does this mean that non-corporate encryption is a-ok? Everyone has to roll their own encoder/decoder?

  7. Jason Boxman

    Meanwhile, no one seems to care about introducing a bill to rein in the 10 spam calls I get daily on a brand new cell phone number, rending my communications device virtually useless.

    What a joke.

    The United States seems intent upon being the first among failed states, a truly exceptional position to occupy.

  8. kgw

    Jason, perhaps you know this…

    In your “Do Not Disturb” settings, set an exception for people in your contacts: voila!

  9. Mel

    One deep problem, unchanged since the 1990s when the Pentagon, and then the Department of Commerce tried to outlaw encryption on the Internet, is that you can’t do business over the Internet without encryption.
    Obviously, financial transaction data flowing around in the clear is an open invitation and a happy hunting ground for crime, but there’s more.
    Back then, we were considering augmenting our design meetings by discussing various points and possibilities using email between times. Lots of trade secrets and potential trade secrets would be going back and forth. Those were things that could not be visible outside the company.
    Frankly, it wasn’t just government discouragement that stopped us. Secure comms are very hard to do right, it would have been a huge effort, and some people in the design circle probably wouldn’t jump through the many hoops most of the time. So we stayed with face-to-face meetings, like before.

    1. drumlin woodchuckles

      You could threaten his office with the following: if the bill passes, you will support the most Trumpanon primary opponent he has for his next election.

  10. Oh

    Every piece of legislation propsed or passed is for the benefit of their masters – the huge corporations err people. These crooked legislators don’t want to do a single thins to benefit the people. Why does the population think we have a Democracy?

  11. Dave in Austin

    A few comments:

    1) Excellent! I’ve been hounding my brother’s nursing for the records via email and got the “But we can’t”. Monday they get a Certified Letter with the CFR cite.

    2) As a practical matter, the EARN IT is unnecessary. Internal US transmissions are routed by private entities that may route as they choose. When the first communications satellites went up (space is outside US domestic jurisdiction) any message we needed to tap were just routed to the satellite. A second practice is to route messages to places which is foreign territory and there are I’ve heard some unique and highly creative ways to employ this loophole. I sense that these loopholes were used sparingly and in the furtherance of what were real US security needs, but I may be wrong on that. If the US wants to look at a text message it can just be routed via a cooperative international partner.

    3) End-to-end encryption requires either the Whittfield-Duffie (WD) prime number approach or a shared one-time pad. Real, one-party-to-one party security prefers the latter because minor technical or administrative issues can undermine the reliability of WD and there is the theoretical possibility to undermine all WD systems using either quantum computers or an undisclosed technique to factor primes. But in the usual course of business, both in bank transfers and kiddie porn, end-to-end encryption provides reasonable protection. Having a non-air gapped computer or a standard cell phone is a much bigger security issue. End-to-end encryption is most easily undermined by peeking into the physical devise at one end or the other.

    4)I believe there is a loophole in EARN IT for intra-governmental texts and records and probably for records where one end is the government, so a senior Senate staffer texting his girlfriend for a hookup is covered under “government exception”. All it takes is one Congressman to introduce a bill extending the EARN IT bill to all government employees and agencies. As it stands the only people allowed to share kiddie porn safely are the President, the Senators, the House members and all their staffs…. And maybe the military.

    1. Mike

      Your points are very interesting, never heard of 2) but is a clever legal work around. Your point on quantum computing is interesting. It seems software and hardware folks think there is an application for that technology. The serious discussions I have heard from physicists is they don’t actually think there is an application for quantum computing outside of producing models for physics… very limited application in that respect.

  12. drumlin woodchuckles

    If this bill becomes law, it may drive a new rebirth of high-powered home computers and the ability to send stuff around by courier, carrier pigeon, etc. People who don’t care to be read by Big Whatever will make the tradeoff between more time to send memory devices around by courier, carrier pigeon, etc. as against less
    spying by Big Whatever.

    And those powerful computers currently used to mine BitCoins? Perhaps they can be redesigned and retargeted to send whole MinerLoads of strong-encrypted shopping lists, random number strings, etc. to all the sites that Big Whatever wants to read and spy on.

    Eventually only a glow ball gorillas type approve base Don vining Anna tagging the swear punked will work this problem.

  13. Phichibe

    THis won’t win me any fans among cyberlibertarians but the truth of the matter is that the biggest technological advance in the last 50 years to threaten privacy and empower the surveillance state was the development since the late 90s of effective, “accurate enough” real time speech recognition. When Apple unveiled Siri millions of people embraced it (Siri btw came out of research at SRI International starting in the 80s, when a charity at which I volunteered called Recording for the Blind was asked to suggest readers to aid the SRI team with high quality vocal readings of various texts). The late Joseph Weizenbaum, Professor of COmputer Science at MIT and a refugee from Hitler’s Germany declared in the 1960s that no computer scientist should work either on speech recognition or visual recognition, of the big AI problems of the First Age of AI. Yet here we are.

    Think of it this way: we know that East Germany had tens of thousands of agents just listening to the 10% or so of East German households where the Stasi had implanted microphones. The gating factor on the Stasi surveillance was enough ears to listen to the signals coming in. Now imagine what their operation would have looked like with real-time massively parallel computer based speech recognition systems. Kind of like what Apple, Google, and thousands of big corporations use 24-7. It’s too late to stop this, and frankly the NSA wiretapping text messages or doing deep content analysis on hundreds of millions of digital devices kind of is an afterthought compared to the real time speech surveillance technology that’s already here and ubiquitous. What China, North Korea, and other authoritarian regimes are doing with this beyond frightening.

    Besides, the cyber left’s idolizing end-end encryption is itself problematic. There was a man arrested in Milwaukee back in the late 2000s on suspicion of having child porn on his computer but he’d encrypted his drive and the Feds couldn’t crack it. They got a court order to compell him, which his attorneys appealed on the novel grounds that if he provided the decryption password then he’d be incriminating himself against his will, in violation of his 5th Amendment rights. Last I heard he was in Federal detention and his appeal was wending its way through the legal system but that was years ago and there may have been a resolution since then. I know it hasn’t made it to the USSC. In any case, as I used to remind my cyber libertarian colleagues when I worked in Silicon Valley, any encryption scheme can be broken with a simple pair of pliers if the investigators are willing to use them a la Dick Cheney’s playbook.


    1. TimH

      ianal, but 5A rights can be deemed to have been relinquished once a suspect has started cooperating with an interrogation.

      Also, had he admitted that the computer was his? If the police find a random loose laptop or loose hard drive in a search, it could be someone else’s. A fully plumbed in desktop in the house of someone living alone is a different matter.

  14. Synoia

    I don’t understand this:

    A provision of the bill that purports to protect services using encryption (Section 5, Page 16) doesn’t come close to getting the job done. State prosecutors or private attorneys would be able to drag an online service provider into court over accusations that their users committed crimes, then use the fact that the service chose to use encryption as evidence against them—a strategy that’s specifically allowed under EARN IT.

    Is seems to say that a Bank using end-to send encryption, somewhat necessary I believe, makes the Bank is liable for crimes commuted if it includes payments over their Banks to end encryption.

    Would the sanctions on end-to-end encryption apply to Bank transactions? And perhaps all other on line commerce?

  15. Skunk

    What bothers me the most about all types of electronic surveillance is that it rests on an inherent lack of respect for other people. There is no difference between a peeping tom and a peeping NSA operative. In both cases, the perpetrators arbitrarily assume that their right to peep outweighs your right right to privacy. It doesn’t.

    It is necessary to have a sphere in which each person can reasonably expect not to be bothered by other people. Surveillance inherently erodes this sphere of personal agency. In other words, it erodes freedom– not just outward freedom, but the inward freedom that we all count on to live life as we choose. In the vast majority of cases, this is done for flimsy reasons (e.g., a projected fear of a bogeyman under every bed).

    The disrespect feeds on itself. I don’t believe all of the anger and polarization in the country is economic. A lot of it probably arises just because people are fed up with being treated disrespectfully. This may be particularly true for rural populations or for those without a college education. Surveillance is inherently contemptuous of basic human dignity. Some of the people on the receiving end have already been unfairly blamed for a variety of the nation’s ills (e.g., the “blame Bubba” topic we’ve discussed on NC). By compounding the problem with further acts of disrespect, this system may create its own bogeymen.

    1. Lambert Strether

      > Surveillance is inherently contemptuous of basic human dignity.

      It’s a lot like droit de seigneur, except for every aspect of your life, down to the most trivial. Yech.

      Should be renamed to “Voyeurs and Panty-Sniffers Protection Act,” or some such.

    1. Synoia

      No, proton mail and a VPNs cannot avoid surveillance. They would become blocked by your internet provider.

      One still depends on one’s local internet provider. They would block all such traffic, because the part of the bill was the transfer of liability to the carrier and user, which also seemed to deem use of encryption by the user as presumptive proof of Child Pornography, aided and abetted by one’s Internet provider.

      Encryption uses specific IP port numbers in the packet headers and specific IP destination addresses, to Identify that the traffic is encrypted, and thus must be decrypted which is easy to block.

      In addition Proton Mail’s IP addresses are public, and would be blocked by one’s ISP, as would Tor.

      That I believe is the major rationale of the bill’s making carriers criminally liable for not blocking encryption.

      Specific IP addresses would become blocked by the carriers. Banking,and other businesses, where encryption is required would have IP addresses “licensed” by the carriers to have encryption.

  16. Carla

    Although Yves says EARN IT was resurrected from the early 2000’s, Joe Mullin says it was beaten back in 2020. These statements seem to be in conflict.

  17. someone

    This push to de-privatize everyone’s lives is highly disturbing. If passed, no doubt over 90% of American’s will be subject to continuous 4th ammend. violation, leaving a only small fraction of tech-savvy (real tech-savvy, not the early Apple-tech adopters) able to legally skirt the law.

    Equally importantly, if/once US govt adopt such policies, it would be hard for the US to lecture other authoritarian govt (e.g. China, Saudi Arabia, Belarus, Hungary,etc.) on civil liberties and hard for Big Tech not to comply similar demands from foreign govts, on the grounds of “protecting the children”.

    But IF this wretched bill does pass, I hope law enforcement takes the opportunity to ALSO track and inventory each gun and gun owner in the United States. Might as well use one civil rights violation to cure the gross abuse of another.

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