One of the most recent leaders to sign the secretive and wide-spread internet censorship-minded Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement has now apologized and called for mass demonstrations to protest what she’s done. It’s Slovenia’s ambassador to Japan, miss Helena Drnovsek Zorko, who signed the ACTA and was immediately drown in emails and calls from Slovenians criticizing her for doing so. This bill was then read in full by the ambassador, she then deciding that the agrees fully with the critics who’ve mailed her, apologizing to her children and her country before calling for what’s effectively a revolt against the agreement on the whole.
This agreement is one that’s being signed by leaders around the world as we speak, having been in the works for over a year now without any mass media coverage and largely unread by those who sign it. The ACTA is an agreement that will bring into play another worldwide organization which will have laws that supersede any and all individual countries laws and will ultimately make it so internet providers will find it more cost-effective just to give over your personal information to the organization than to keep your activities private. The Internet will be censored, the internet will no longer be a free and open form of communication, and nothing will be the same.
You’ll be glad you read these select parts of the apology written up by the ambassador after she signed the agreement in question:
On Thursday, 26th January, 2012, I signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) on behalf of the Republic of Slovenia, following the directive and authorisation of the Slovenian government. A somewhat longer clarification of the signature can be found on the Media section of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, which explains the role of the Ministry and my role as the Slovenian Ambassador to Japan. This explanation states that I signed the agreement because I was instructed to do so by the government, and because it is a part of my job. …
I signed ACTA out of civic carelessness, because I did not pay enough attention. Quite simply, I did not clearly connect the agreement I had been instructed to sign with the agreement that, according to my own civic conviction, limits and withholds the freedom of engagement on the largest and most significant network in human history, and thus limits particularly the future of our children. I allowed myself a period of civic complacency, for a short time I unplugged myself from media reports from Slovenia, I took a break from Avaaz and its inflation of petitions, quite simply I allowed myself a rest. In my defence, I want to add that I very much needed this rest and that I am still having trouble gaining enough energy for the upcoming dragon year. At the same time, I am tackling a workload that increased, not lessened, with the advent of the current year. All in line with a motto that has become familiar to us all, likely not only diplomats: less for more. Less money and fewer people for more work. And then you overlook the significance of what you are signing. And you wake up the following morning with the weight of the unbearable lightness of some signature.
On Saturday, 4th February, a protest is planned in Ljubljana for those who object to the ratification of ACTA. The true concern and determination of those Slovenian citizens who feel that the agreement must be stopped will be reflected in the number of people who attend this protest. I would like to ask for somebody to please attend in my name. One of my concerned correspondents asked me what my brother, the late Dr. Janez Drnovšek , would have thought of my signature. The struggle to protect civic freedoms is most certainly in the spirit of his heritage, much more so than the removal or non-removal of some statue. Let my example be a cautionary tale of how swiftly we can make mistakes if we allow ourselves to slip. And if nothing else, we then sleep very badly.
Helena Drnovšek Zorko
You can read the entirety of the letter written by Zorko on Metinalista and find yourself a reason why not to rally with protesters of the ACTA to bring this agreement down before it reaches final ratification. There’s still time to stop it – we must!