Moises Fuertes/Contributing Writer
Edward Snowden, the young man who worked for the National Security Agency (NSA) and leaked project PRISM, is no traitor. He is a hero. He also happens to be one of the few whistleblowers that has revealed his identity at the height of the leak.
Justified as a necessity to catch terrorists, project PRISM has given our government the tools to spy on everyone more effectively than ever before. It has handed to them the meta-data (the details about who calls whom, when, and for what duration) on a silver platter.
This justification, which boils down to the giving up of our rights to feel safe, is uncalled for.
I believe it is exactly these type of affairs that our forefathers attempted to stop by crafting our Constitution and Bill of Rights. We are meant to be a free people, yet there is nothing free about being spied on.
Think on all the types of abuses this can lead to. The minute this massive data pool on anyone’s personal life is accessed by another person, any theory of who that person is can be crafted based on phone calls and data from his or her past.
At best, as our government has stated, this can lead to a safe America. At worst, it can silence any minority at any time, undermine the freedom America is fighting for, and put a giant question mark on the United States as a whole entity.
This type of thing has been happening for a while now, since it all changed after Sept. 11. But I’m seriously starting to think that American citizens have become so psyched out by the attacks on the World Trade Center that they have become OK with the idea of giving up their freedoms for security, security that is oftentimes not assured.
This is why Edward Snowden is a hero to me, because he believes in a free America, a just America, one in which a safe future doesn’t revolve around the idea of settling for safety at the expense of this country’s foundation.
The sacrifices he made in order to bring to light just how much surveillance the U.S. government does, in general, is a testament to his belief in this country, and his disbelief in the way it’s headed.
1. “NSA’s Project Prism Leaker Steps Forward,” via Independent Journal Review
2. “Boston Marathon Explosion: Headquarters On Lockdown Following Blast Near Race Finish Line (LIVE UPDATES),” The Huffington Post
3. “NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden: ‘I don’t want to live in a society that does these sort of things,'” via YouTube