Dear Mr. Tonko,
My name is David Lochner; I am 23 years old, a recent college graduate and a native to New York. I am writing you this letter in objection to H.R.3261, otherwise known as the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA. After reading through the bill this morning and educating myself on what it intends to do, I can respectively say that this bill needs to be changed as it stands today or be removed from the house floor entirely. To my understanding the bill is currently being reworked and I commend any effort to allow this legislation the time to fully mature.
I could explain why I think this specific type of legislation is unwarranted and misguided as far as what the goals of the bill are. Unfortunately I do not have the time to fully express these thoughts, nor do I have full information to make a concise argument. I have full faith that people more educated on this subject than I will speak for me though.
What I will say is that this bill seems to forget that the internet is still in its infancy. We have only just begun to harness its power, to efficiently regulate it, and most importantly, maximize its benefit for society. Being a student of economics I have seen in the past few years just how much the internet has done for our economy as a whole. Not only has the internet created real growth, it has also significantly reduced asymmetric information in the world economy as a whole.
Again, the internet is young and it will undoubtedly be around forever. Urgency with a bill such as this is a dangerous prospect as we know it is harder to redact legislation, rather than get it right the first time.
In closing, I would also like to point out that this bill seems to be aimed at foreign entities which may or may not agree with current law in the United States. The protectionist overtones of this bill, if passed, will certainly hurt our image on the world stage. Furthermore, America should be the image of freedom that other countries try and replicate. If we do enact this bill we would be limiting the availability of certain websites that the state does not see as lawful. The People’s Republic of China practices this type of censorship with their search engines already. While I respect China for its own positive qualities, I cannot say that it is a free state. I can only conclude that if this bill passes we do not take a step toward freedom, but rather a step back from it.
Thank you for your time,