When politicians amended the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in the aftermath of Sept. 11 to “make us safe,” they promised that this massive new power would never be used to spy on American citizens. That was a blatant lie because U.S. intelligence agencies almost immediately began collecting information on every phone call and electronic communication in the United States. Allegedly even the Obama administration spied on the Trump campaign. FISA is a massive invasion of our constitutional right to privacy, and its misuse should alarm all citizens of all political persuasions.

Now politicians want to pass new “red flag” gun laws to again “make us safe," laws that could punish citizens for what they might possibly do based on mere suspicion. These politicians also promise that these new laws will never be used to deny citizens their constitutional right to keep and bear arms. With their demonstrated track record, should we trust them this time around? I think not.

As Benjamin Franklin once observed, “He who would give up an essential liberty to obtain temporary security deserves neither.” Amen to that.

Wilbur W. Wells, Tehachapi