Up until recently I was like the vast majority of Americans out there. I had definite opinions about corporate and fundamentalist interests infringing on the people's privacy with draconian legislation pushed through congress by "bought and paid for" legislators. I had a point of view that I thought was not being heard, but I thought "What good will it do? I'm just one voice and I don't want to stand out because it will just attract those right wing extremists who terrorize those who disagree with them." Hell, I have a family to think of and just the idea of having some pro-life group singling my family out to make me pay for believing differently kept me from speaking out. Then I discovered the internet (actually, I invented it--just kidding) as a tool to communicate with like-minded individuals. Being able to get together with others to make your collective voice heard makes all the difference in the world. Right wing extremist groups are like high school bullies, they pick on the weak and those who are not well represented or a part of a well organized group. Another benefit of speaking as part of a group: local, state, and federal officials will pay more attention to a small well organized group than they will a single well organized individual. And when you find that your left wing long-haired hippy communist idea is actually shared by soccer moms, accountants, farmers, and of course long-haired hippy communists, you feel more comfortable speaking your mind.
The internet has been an extremely powerful political tool when utilized by the grassroots organizations. I believe the success they have seen is the main reason for corporate and right wing attacks on internet privacy. Communication and the right to communicate is so valuable that fundamentalist groups will go to extreme measures to quiet opposing views. I have come to realize that my voice is needed and that this will be an ongoing debate because there will always be those who would try to quiet opposing views by any means possible.
I am much more active in my government now thanks to the internet and the freedom we have to gather online and question those who should be serving us in government.