Letters to the Editor

'Perimeter' pact threatens sovereignty

Alex Newman in an article found in the New American informed a very small amount of people Feb. 11 that a deal was reached between Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the American president, which was kept completely silent in the American press. Working together, the PM and president reached an agreement that creates a "North American Perimeter" that will be "diminishing the role of the nations' shared border and develop a biometric system to track North Americans." A policy such as this that has been agreed to without a voice from the people is completely disrespectful to America's system of government and population, which was not informed of or asked to approve. The notion that the executive branch can act on behalf of the American people without the consent of Congress makes me question exactly how accountable the government is to the American people. According to the document as it was signed, each nation's respective Congress and Parliament have no bearing or say on this issue, as according to the agreement, "Responsibility for ensuring inter-agency coordination will rest with the prime minister and the president and their respective officials." The article goes on to further state that the "Canadian press referred to the agreement as the most significant change in U.S.-Canada relations since [the North American Free Trade Agreement]. ... The U.S. press, on the other hand, barely mentioned it." Why were Americans not made knowledgeable of this new ratified agreement?

This is not a little diplomatic issue, or foreign relations instance; this is an event that should matter to every person on each side of the Canada/America border. A four-page document was signed, which laid out this perimeter, and also laid out a "Beyond the Border Working Group, which will be charged with the declaration's implementation and with reporting to the U.S. president and the Canadian prime minister in the next few months and on a regular basis after that." This is a perfect example of the government not being accountable to the people, not engaging the public and keeping nation-changing policy out of the press. The president will act alone and personally oversee his own sector as described above. The president acting alone such as seen with this perimeter agreement, with no checks and balances from the government, further proves that this nation is not as free as most people tend to want to believe. The government operates under the guise of rule by the people, when, in fact, one man can, and has, acted alone, while putting national sovereignty at risk. According to Newman, "Essentially, the declaration commits the two governments to work together on everything from health, security, the economy, terror, fraud and pandemic preparedness to countless other areas where the U.S. government does not even possess constitutional authority to act within the 50 states. ... The document covers a new area: biometric tracking and identification of North American citizens." I would like to know what constitutional powers allow this hijacking of freedoms, government and foreign policy to exist? Is America truly free where the people rule, or is America another failed republican ideology that simply moves closer to socialism and oligarchy every day, where a government can now collect and share your "biometric" information with another country without telling or asking you?

The document I raise concern about continues to mention other North American nations joining the "Perimeter" in the future, as the American president is set to visit Latin America relatively quick to no doubt enhance and expand his agency and power, in which the American people have no recourse. With all of the turmoil and civil unrest in Mexico over the past many years, I believe it is not in the best interest to start sharing sovereignty of America with other nations and vice-versa. What is happening here is the beginning of a North American federation quite like the European Union, which trumps national sovereignty in favor of a continental sovereignty, which therefore subordinates each respective country's authority to manage its own issues to a higher collective power. This type of federation gives little to no voice to the people, as seen by the larger and increasingly unpopular European Union.

The writer lives in Murrells Inlet.