Your Government at Work

In which Representative Mike Doogan (D-Alaska) stalks and tries to expose the identity of an anonymous blogger in retribution for criticism. (He didn't quite succeed, but he came close, and got her first name right. It is, unfortunately, unlikely that the story will end there.)

Disgusting. I honestly don't even have the words to describe how furious this shit makes me. This is borderline if not outright criminal, and Doogan should be asked to resign his seat immediately.

Mudflats' whole post should definitely be read in full, but there's one passage I want to highlight specifically (emphasis mine):
This is an elected State Representative, of my own political party, who has decided that it's not OK for me to control the information about my identity; that it's not OK to express my opinion on my own blog without shouting from the rooftops who I am.

If I were to appear, as many of you have, at a political rally and I were to hold up a sign that expressed my opinion, I don't have to sign my name on the bottom. And if someone wants to come online and read my diary, they are free to do so. And if they want to disagree, that's OK too.

It said in my "About" page that I choose to remain anonymous. I didn't tell anyone why. I might be a state employee. I might not want my children to get grief at school. I might be fleeing from an ex-partner who was abusive and would rather he not know where I am. My family might not want to talk to me anymore. I might alienate my best friend. Maybe I don't feel like having a brick thrown through my window. My spouse might work for the Palin administration. Maybe I'd just rather people not know where I live or where I work. Or none of those things may be true. None of my readers, nor Mike Doogan had any idea what my personal circumstances might be. But that didn't seem to matter.
Part of the reason that I gave up my anonymity was because there were people trying to figure out who I am, and the feeling of being constantly stalked was worse than the fears associated with exposing my identity. It's fucked up that those are progressive bloggers' only choices, all because we hold opinions that people don't like and have the unmitigated temerity to express them.

And there are people who just don't find anything more important than their own "right," which is, in fact, not a right at all, to know the identity of someone who says something they don't like.

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