I was fascinated by the article of FBI surveillance on Wilkinson and I also found it to be very disturbing.
It is quite remarkable how closely we could be scrutinized by the authorities--our precise daily routines, habits, conversations and written records of any sort--that it almost reminded me of the Big Brother society in George Orwell's "1984." It is like the panic of the McCarthy Era all over again. The FBI sabotages political activities of those who were thought to be a menace to the nation's security.
I understand the seriousness of subversive activities and I support governmental surveillance on dangerous individuals to a certain extent. However, the intensity of various kinds of surveillance, such as that on Wilkinson, is frightening. Is such an operation justified? We cannot overlook the importance of civil rights which are the basis of our democratic system. After all, the intentions behind such governmental operations are to protect and maintain a free society.