Oh great, now the government is actually planning on monitoring the social media of our former Pentagon members, supposedly to “avoid embarrassment”. The government has purchased surveillance software in order to sweep their social media for…well, what exactly?
This is problematic on several levels. First of all, it is our First Amendment right to make fools of ourselves on social media, and everywhere else, to be clear. It is also our First Amendment right to speak our minds about matters of the day, both trivial and important. I would relish some ridiculous memes from Generals, even though as a rule, they don’t seem to have the best material.
Who is going to be the judge of what is considered embarrassing? And more importantly, are we saying it would embarrass the person, or the Pentagon? Since when do retired Pentagon personnel have to submit to scrutiny of what they have to say, now that they are basically civilians? What proposed penalties would be imposed?
It is ridiculous overreach by our government to curtail the free speech of any citizens, and that includes the military. Now, if a newly retired General was spouting off about matters of national security, I would say that someone needs to be taken out to the woodshed. But this doesn’t seem to be about that. Making sure that a General doesn’t embarrass himself seems like the job of his assistant or wife. What are we really looking for?
Also, it makes me squirm thinking about just how many of our tax dollars are being spent on software to surveil our own citizens. Wouldn’t that money be better spent surveilling our enemies? We are in a bad place when our government is more concerned with controlling us than they are serving and protecting us.

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