What would you do with all the information from the government? Well, think about it, would you do what twenty-nine-year old Edward Snowden did or would you keep the documents and let off all the information to other countries? Edward Snowden is considered a hero. He had performed a great public service by revealing information about the NSA keeping records and selling people’s information worldwide. Clearly, Snowden risked his life to provide us with proof that we have been lied too by our government officials. Edward Snowden released information detailing American Privacy and by doing so he is no longer freely able to re-enter the United States, his home country as a hero.
The young whistleblower worked for the CIA who then used his intelligence to work for the private company in the NSA in Japan and then was recruited to work inside the NSA in Hawaii. Along with him, was his beloved longtime girlfriend, Lindsay Mills. Who moved along with Snowden and helped him get through his medical problems. Snowden dropped out of high school and studied computers at Arundel Community College in Maryland. Between his months in and out of school, he spent those days at the Army Reserves but did not complete his training due to breaking both legs on a training course.
The young whistleblower worked at several computer companies such as Dell before moving onto bigger and better things. While working at the NSA he became suspicious of the government and began downloading secret documents from the US with foreign allies and telephone records. Secretly, Snowden stated his epilepsy was getting bad and he needed to leave due to his “medical” condition. After he compiled the large documents in 2013, he took a flight to Hong Kong, China to meet with journalists and filmmakers. Then, Snowden’s life suddenly changed. The Washington Post and The Guardian released Snowden’s information and the debates got real. Is Edward Snowden considered a hero or traitor?
When Edward Snowden released the information, he shared documents that revealed shocking data about global mass surveillance. He showed how the government was scooping up communications such as private emails, phone locations and web histories all without consent. In Snowden’s words, “The N.S.A. has built an infrastructure that allows it to intercept almost everything. With this capability, the vast majority of human communications are automatically ingested without targeting.
If I wanted to see your emails or your wife’s phone, all I have to do is use intercepts. I can get your emails, passwords, phone records, credit cards.” (The New Yorker) With what Snowden said we now have the power to question any sort of testimony. The best thing about Snowden is he knew the consequences that he was going to have to face, including being permanently kicked out of his own country, but that never stopped him. He has amazing courage and changed laws to protect our privacy. Without Snowden’s amazing find we could still be facing the lies the government has been keeping secret.
Nowadays people are constantly on their phones or computers whether it is for school work, work or just for fun. How would you feel if you had no idea you were being watched? As I tell myself, they would not be seeing much other than a stressed-out girl trying to write her essays in time of the due date or a girl looking at her grades with a cringe. But for other people, the situation could be different whether it is for the good or bad. But thanks to Snowden, we know the government will not be able to get away with that nonsense again and I sure do feel a little more protected but my camera still has tape over the camera on my laptop. When looking things up online and then going to buy something on Amazon, not even an hour later the exact thing you looked up is showing up on social media.
That is one very weird system that the government already has set up. For example, one time I took a nice pair of leggings for running and then went to the online store to buy them and before I even logged into the website my name and number was automatically filled in and already had the pair of leggings stashed into the cart. The government has a very funny way of working and thinking they are making people’s lives easier but really they are allowing people to question things and the government is doing more harm than good. Many people do not feel comfortable when being recorded in general so imagine not knowing you were being recorded. “I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under.” (The New Yorker) Clearly, Snowden did this to make himself feel more protected and do what he thinks is the right thing to do.
There are thousands of people that consider Edward Snowden to be a traitor instead of a hero and here’s their reasoning. Yes, he leaked information from documents from the government but did he really do any crime to hurt anyone? “He is, rather, a grandiose narcissist who deserves to be in prison.” (The New Yorker) The documents were legally authorized and the Verizon phone bills, for example, were locked up. But according to people who think Snowden should be imprisoned believe that Snowden knew this because he leaked the very court order that proved the continuation of this project. “He wasn’t blowing the whistle on anything illegal; he was exposing something that failed to meet his own standards of propriety.” (The New Yorker)
According to Jeffrey Toobin, the staff writer of The New Yorker and CNN Snowden fled to Hong Kong because he knew the publications were imminent. When instead, I strongly disagree with Toobin’s opinions. What Edward Snowden did was meant to protect the citizens of the United States fourth amendment rights and those include; peoples’ rights to be secured in their houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures that are not to be violated and no warrants should be issued. It is very clear that Snowden knew what he was doing and was ready to fight for what he knows is the right thing to do.
So, what do you think about Edward Snowden, a hero or a traitor? I strongly believe Snowden is a hero and has definitely put his life in danger to help protect the United States citizens and the people’s rights. Edward Snowden did this country a large service by releasing the secret information. While Snowden may not be allowed back into his home country he is able to live his life knowing he did everything he could to put a stop into the nonsense that was going to get more abrupt if the government kept lying to citizens. Edward Snowden is very much so a hero.