Would you want to be warned if there was a peeping tom in your neighborhood? Would you thank the person who gave the warning? Or would you say...
“That’s okay, I’ve got nothing to hide!”
Of course we don’t want to be watched by perfect strangers. We don’t even want to be unsure if we’re being watched or not. We value our privacy.
Likewise, wouldn’t you want to be warned if The State was “watching” your call records, emails, and Internet activities?
After all, they could use your information against you, even if you’re totally innocent…
Droll, inside-joke emails between old friends may be interpreted as a criminal conspiracy.
If you research radical groups, you may be profiled as a radical yourself, or even a potential terrorist.
Any online purchase that may seem strange or embarrassing could be used to blackmail you.
State surveillance without a specific, court-issued warrant violates the Fourth Amendment. It’s also a form of coercion. It has a chilling effect. It makes people hesitate to speak or act naturally.
The nation should THANK former NSA private contractor Edward Snowden for exposing the NSA’s unconstitutional and immoral bulk collection of our Internet activities and phone data. His revelations sparked a wide, trans-partisan call to reform surveillance laws and rein in the NSA.
Instead, he’s facing possible decades in prison under the Espionage Act, and has lived in Russia – one of the few countries the U.S. couldn’t bully into denying him asylum -- since 2013.
He can’t, because he won’t be allowed to mount a meaningful defense. Based on precedent, he won’t be able to tell the jury that…
His leaks served the public interest and led to many reform bills, and even policy changes by the Executive Branch.
His leaks were not intended to, and did not, harm Americans or the United States.
Contrast his behavior with that of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Clapper lied to Congress about the NSA’s data-mining program. Lying to Congress is a felony, but Clapper was never even investigated, let alone fired.
Who served the public interest: Clapper, for covering up the NSA’s activities, or Snowden, for exposing them?
Also contrast Snowden with former CIA director David Petraeus...
Petraeus illegally gave “above top secret” information – including the names of intelligence agents in the field – to his mistress/biographer; Snowden never exposed any agent.
Petraeus’s leaks were to advance his own interests, not his country’s; Snowden put the nation before himself.
Petraeus won’t serve a day in jail for his leaks. Neither should Snowden. He should, instead, be pardoned for his “crime” of exposing the NSA’s war against privacy and the Fourth Amendment.
But the President won’t pardon Snowden unless it’s politically expedient.
Congress should take action. Tell your Representative and Senators to…
Pass a resolution telling the President that Edward Snowden should be pardoned.
Pass a bill that cuts off funding for Snowden’s prosecution.
Pass a private bill that reinstates Snowden’s U.S. passport.
Use the form at right to send your elected representatives a letter about this issue. It's easy!
We provide the first few words of the letter so that Congressional offices will see the most important point right at the start, and so that no one can hijack our system for another purpose. Here's the part we provide . . .