By now, we have all heard about Eric Snowden and all his whistle-blowing. If not, here’s a quick and dirty synopsis. Over the course of the last several days, the U.K. newspaper, The Guardian, has been receiving anonymous mind-blowing tips from some anonymous good citizen (sort of) about the U.S. government’s gross infringement of privacy rights. Millions of detailed cell phone records collected, private information accessed by Apple users, and Google searches were all some of the accusations thrown around by the “2013 Deep Throat.” Then, all ape mess broke loose when the informant took to the cyber waves with a 12 minute video explaining who he is, and why he revealed this information. The 29 year old, formerly under the employ of the CIA, left his family in his home state of Hawaii and fled to the shores of Hong Kong to reveal that “everything we say or do is being recorded”:
“I don’t want to live in a society that does these sort of things. 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 … I can’t in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, Internet freedom, and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.”
Since the explosive claims have been made, our government officials, including President Barack Obama (who I’m sure is super-annoyed right now) have been scrambling to provide the public with answers to our mounting inquiries, like “how long has this been going on” or “what part of the game is this?” OK that last question was just mine, but seriously, are these personal records really that pertinent to future terrorist prevention? Or is the “big bad government” just abusing their power like we have all been assuming all along? Once again, maybe I’m the only one that shares that last sentiment. Or maybe not. According to the Washington Times, legendary director Oliver Stone went on a rant fest about the Obama administration’s handling of the recent prosecution of six other “whistle-blowers” and their subsequent treatment. Stone went on to say that Snowden is a “hero.”
The support of Snowden has also reached well beyond Hollywood. A petition was created and posted Sunday night to urge Obama to pardon Snowden for his actions. After Snowden’s explanatory video aired the hashtag #IStandWithEdwardSnowden was trending worldwide on Twitter.
Ironically enough though, according to a poll by CNN.com, 52 percent of Americans disagreed with Snowden’s actions. I’m so like Switzerland on this debate. But what are your thoughts? Are you standing with Snowden?