COVID Contact Tracing Used to Trace Protestors

Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.

Harry S. Truman

I recall telling people on Facebook that they did not want contact tracing to become “a thing” and being told to go hide in the basement with my foil hat “because we need it for COVID”. This was one genie that I was hoping people would be smart enough to keep in the bottle, but no. So here we are, a few months in to having contact tracing available to law enforcement, and its already being used to trace protestors.

Regardless of your stance on the protests currently happening, I think we can all agree that none of wants Big Brother. I think that everyone has the right to have a peaceful assembly as guaranteed by the Constitution. I also think that you should have the right to participate in a peaceful assembly without be tracked and traced governmental agencies and entities.

I also don’t see COVID as a reason to ban celebrations. If protests can be carried out “safely” then surely rest of us can go to the beach or a BBQ and launch some fireworks safely.

Macron already leaned on Facebook to give up the names of the Yellow Vests which prompted a move away from Facebook for the coordination of their protests and onto different encrypted messaging platforms like Signal and Telegraph. Based on the behavior changes in the French group of protestors, I see something similar happening with the contact tracing of US protestors creating a shift to burner phones and other means of contact to coordinate their protests. We are already seeing the shift to the encrypted messenger apps but cell phones are still being used so I think the next step is swap the cell phones for something disposable.

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